Using sales-i MainMan Supplies have gained higher visibility on drifting customers and as a result reported an 8% increase in sales during their first two months.
West Midlands-based MainMan Supplies (MMS), which supplies CE-approved health and safety, janitorial and packaging products, initially rolled out sales-i to 12 internal and field sales staff at its head office in September 2011 and today have 47 users following a successful trial. Headquartered in Cradley Heath, West Midlands, MainMan Supplies have a comprehensive range conforming to relevant CE standards, including head-to-toe protection, janitorial and packaging material products.
We run a tight ship and don't like spending money unless something gives us real value, but sales-i is a very modest outlay particularly for the huge value it is giving us.
With timely alerts about drifting customer accounts and allowing staff to analyze specific threats and opportunities in real time, MainMan Supplies adopted sales-i to address account slippage.
All staff using sales-i – whether on desktop PCs, laptops or mobile devices when out visiting clients have instant access to the same account data and can spot at a glance if a customer’s spending habits have changed, giving them a chance to act swiftly to ensure accounts don’t leave or where the next sales opportunity lies..
“Our first three months were phenomenal using sales-i,” says sales director Andrew Cook. “The field sales team no longer has to study internal sales reports to look for strengths and weaknesses in performance; they now get alerts while on the go, prompting them about potential opportunities and threats – so if a customer’s spending has tailed off in the last month they can catch them before they drift.”
It is not only the speed of information access that is making a difference. sales-i also provides granular detail, presented graphically, so sales executives can identify whether sales of a particular product line are down. “Now we can track trends by product, sales history and against the industry norm,” Andrew explains. “This means that even if a customer has maintained spending levels, we can spot if their purchasing of individual items is down. Restoring four products could mean a difference of £20,000 a month.”
The data being viewed is ‘live’ too, so all sales personnel are able to see the latest variance reports and up-to-the-minute activity on any account, ensuring a fully joined-up experience both in- and outside the office.
“sales-i is a genuinely useful tool,” Andrew says. “If it didn’t produce results, no one would use it, but everyone loves it! Another reason for that is the ease of use. We use the service on demand, so we get the information we need and don’t have to worry about how it all works. We are very pleased with it – particularly the external staff who aren’t known for their ability to absorb change. It gives them the sales intelligence they need so they can react. All the hard work has been taken out, leaving them to focus on closing the deals.”
This initial reaction, and the 8% rise during a few months compared to the same period the previous year, prompted MainMan Supplies to bring forward plans for a wider roll-out to all of their branches. “Our aim was to try out the software for six months to check people would use it, but the results speak for themselves.”
MainMan Supplies have eight branch offices and 98 staff across the UK, of which 47 use sales-i. Further plans include deploying sales-i on tablet devices like the iPad, enabling more spontaneous and convenient access than through laptops while retaining a decent-sized screen. sales-i’s affordability was the final critical factor in MainMan’s attraction to the proposition, Andrew concludes. “We run a tight ship and don’t like spending money unless something gives us real value, but sales-i is a very modest outlay particularly for the huge value it’s giving us.