The Best Questions To Ask Your Distributors On Your Next Product Research Survey

Collect distributor data the right way, get a distributor management system to simplify how distributor data is streamlined across your company

Shoaib Ahmed
4 minutes
January 29, 2024
fmcg distributor data thumnail

We’ve talked extensively in our articles surrounding the topic, about how distributor management solutions and systems are important for maintaining a great and continually working relationship with your distributors.

We’ve discussed in length on how to execute product surveys with your field teams, how to tackle objections from your distributors, merchandising support, and a lot more.

But something we hadn’t covered yet, was exactly what do you ask your distributors when performing a product survey. Often times your agents would go on to the field, simply ask the distributor if they had any leftover stock, when they’d like to restock merchandise, and when the credit if any will be cleared.

See, one of the major reasons for conducting a product survey is not just collecting enough evidence that your product works for your market but also understanding what your distributors think of the market. Asking your distributors the right questions in crucial to making your product survey a success.

We encourage all of our clients at Fieldproxy to do the same, and here’s how some of our biggest clients conduct their product surveys (i.e) the best questions to ask your distributors. Let’s get started already.

Note: Every client is different, and so not all of these questions may apply to your business, but then again, you can always customize these questions to fit your business use case. Stick around to find out how.

What Product Survey Questions Do I Ask My Distributors?

There’s a bunch of different questions about your product you can ask your distributor, but here’s a list of our best ones:

Location Of The Distributor

This is a given, but in case you still do not have the location and proper information on the locality where your distributors are based off of, you should get that data captured as soon as possible.

This will give you and idea of the kind of customer profile that may walk in or talk to your distributor on a regular basis. Personalization will be a key factor in how fmcg sales are done in 2024 and beyond.

Know exactly how much your teams have travelled and what they've been doing! Book a demo today!

Did The Distributor Sell Most Products Over The Counter Or At An Event?

This is subject to change according to your use case, but some of the clients in our portfolio have business models where a lot of their sales are recorded at different events and “melas” During such events, your agents may be talking to more than a single distributor, and collecting that information is also important to your organization.

But then again, it only applies to companies like Prism Johnson - where agents and distributors work together across multiple events and need to record sales all day long.

Average Footfall And Number Of Interested People

This gives you a population density map across your entire market. You get a fair bit of idea on where people buy your products more, which distributors might need more training, where merchandising will play a key role, and which regions can be doubled down on. This is a key metric and you cannot afford to be sleeping on it.

Are There Any Influencers Over The Product?

Identifying key influencers who help push your product faster are indispendable to your organization. For instance, large scale organizations in the pharma sector have good relationships with their doctors and medics to help medical reps push their products through pharmacies faster and more efficiently.

You could capture that influencer data to make more informed decisions on whether or not influencer-based selling would be right for your product.

How Do You Capture All Of This Data?

And of course, if you want to capture and store all of your data in a single place, there’s only one app you need to look at: Fieldproxy

Fieldproxy will help you not just sort out what kind of data you need to collect from your distributors and customers, but also give you real-time updates on that data, showing you exactly what your agents are doing, and how they’re processing that data

Real time location tracking for your field teams. Book a demo today!

Capture End-to-End Distributor And Customer Information

A distributor management system is like a data warehouse for all your distributor contacts. But it is also so much more than that. A good DMS solution should be able to not just store and retrieve distributor data for you, but also give you actionable insights and steps to enact on the information you have.

Think of it as a smart application that helps you keep track of when your distributors are running out of stock, what would be a good time to initiate a marketing campaign, and sending out personal handwritten notes to their families on Diwali. Well, maybe not that last bit, but for everything else, and more, an end-to-end DMS is the ideal go-to.

Custom forms on Fieldproxy for Distributors. Book a demo today!

Optimize Routes And Make Visit Plans To Distributors

Building up on our previous point, a software for distributors should be built around the relationship between your field agents and the dealers/distributors.

It should be able to recognize when a shipment needs to be made, notify managers of the upcoming shipment, help them create a proper route plan, identify who is best suited to complete the job fastest and most effectively - capacity planning 101 - assign the job to the right field agent, all while doing a hundred and fifty-five other things. That is the definition of a distributor management software that works for your business.

A Little Bit About Fieldproxy

As businesses expand and operations grow more complex, managing field teams can be a daunting task. From managing tickets to scheduling jobs and everything in between, keeping track of everything can be time-consuming and inefficient. That's where Fieldproxy comes in - an end-to-end field team management solution that aims to simplify these tasks and streamline operations.

Distributor Management Solutions By Fieldproxy

Fieldproxy's Distributor Management Solutions leverage AI and smart sheets to optimize inventory management, order processing, and supply chain visibility. It helps you improve communication between manufacturers and distributors, promoting better issue resolution times and faster deliveries.

With real-time data analytics, businesses can make informed decisions, minimize stockouts, and enhance overall productivity. It’s worked for 250+ clients across the globe, it will work for your business too. Get a free demo today!

Get a free demo today!

Schedule Jobs For Field Agents

Another important aspect of Fieldproxy is its job scheduling feature. With this tool, businesses can schedule jobs and assign them to field teams in real-time. This helps ensure that the right team is on the job at the right time, which can save businesses time and money.

Generate Quotes And Estimates

Fieldproxy also offers a mobile application that allows field teams to generate quotes and estimates on the go. This is particularly useful for businesses that operate in industries where quotes and estimates are necessary, such as construction or landscaping. With this feature, businesses can provide accurate quotes to their customers quickly and easily.

Everyone uses Fieldproxy. So should you. Get a free demo today!

Raise Invoices And Collect Payments

In addition to generating quotes and estimates, the Fieldproxy mobile application also allows businesses to raise invoices and facilitate payment collections through integrations with popular payment gateways. This can help businesses get paid faster and with less hassle.

Collect Valuable Customer Feedback 

With features like customer happiness index, and historical customer data, ensure your customers are always satisfied with your products and services. Know exactly how your customers operate and provide better quality services.

Upgrade to Fieldproxy for free! Book a demo today!

Dashboards And Reports

Fieldproxy’s easily-presentable data dashboards and reports allow managers to make sense of all the data their field teams collect, in real time.

Create, curate, and manage different dashboards and reports to help make better data-backed decisions for your service teams.

There’s always going to be visits that clash with your agents’ schedules or that are of immediate attention. Question is, will your current route management process be prepared to handle it? If not, then you might want to consider shifting to a new system.

The old way to go about this would be taking a look at all your visits scheduled for the day and find out which agent has more time on their hands, then see if they’re closer to the client’s place and schedule a visit. 

At Fieldproxy, we do things a bit different. All you have to do is, head over to Fieldproxy’s AI visual builder, ask it a question, and it will show you actionable data for you to interact with, in 5 seconds.

You instantly know who’s available and who’s not, and allocating tasks to your agents becomes child’s play. The point is, if you’re not able to prioritize your visits for your agents, you will have a hard time scaling your operations.

Closing Thoughts

So why should businesses consider Fieldproxy? With its comprehensive set of features, Fieldproxy can help businesses save time, streamline operations, and improve customer satisfaction. And with a free demo available, there's no reason not to give it a try.

If you're looking for an end-to-end field team management solution that can help you manage tickets, schedule jobs, generate quotes and estimates, raise invoices, and collect payments while also providing customer feedback support, then Fieldproxy might be the solution for you. Book a free demo today to see how Fieldproxy can help your business improve its operations and customer satisfaction.

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The Best Questions To Ask Your Distributors On Your Next Product Research Survey

Shoaib Ahmed
January 29, 2024
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