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5 Ways Technology Can Improve Your Business

Wine and spirits wholesalers have unique business requirements. Unfortunately, most supply chain software is not set up to handle the way you run your business. Choosing software that is configured for the way you do business can help improve profits and efficiency, while reducing errors and unnecessary complications.

Below we have identified the top five ways the right technology can improve your business:

1. More accurate forecasting. Inaccurate forecasts can cause products to sit on your shelves too long, while your profitability slowly decreases. It is simple to imagine the ideal wine and spirits warehouse: keep stock at a minimum, and never run out of inventory. But, it is much harder to execute. Technology can help.

Using forecasting technology that is rule-based, time-phased, and can take into consideration seasonal variations, sales trends, retailer forecasts, purchase history, and more, can help minimize inventory carrying costs and reduce stock-out situations. It is also important that your forecasting tools are fully integrated with your supply chain software so that updates happen in real-time. This enables your forecasts to react dynamically to the changing marketplace so you stay one step ahead of your demand.

2. Better reporting and extracts. It is important for wine and spirits distributors to have in-depth reporting capabilities. Being able to report on every detail about your business and inventory is critical for making business decisions. And having automated tools to execute beverage specific extracts will save time and resources.

Manually pulling sales reports costs many wine and spirits companies time and resources, and also leads to data being reported incorrectly. Finding a reporting tool that automates sales reporting by customer, sales representative, product, supplier, brand, and more, will increase data integrity, free up resources, and improve decision making speed. Even better, is a tool that performs product and customer analysis, and comparisons, quickly and easily. Another area where automation can improve efficiencies is with beverage extracts. Finding a solution that enables you to export data to Fintech for accounts receivable payment collection, and export data to BDN, VIP, or Trade Pulse for supplier analysis, will save you time and resources.

3. Work from anywhere at any time. Running a wine and spirits wholesale business means you and your team members are always on the move. Whether you are at a meeting on the road or a sales team member is working with a customer, having access to up-to-date information is critical. Using advanced mobile technology can give your team an advantage over the competition.

The first step is finding mobile technology that is optimized for smartphone and tablet viewing. Key areas where mobility can make the most impact are with business intelligence and remote sales order entry. Transitioning to a business intelligence tool that enables you to quickly and easily check in on key performance indicators also ensures you are just seconds away from the sales, profitability, and other information you need to run your business. Sales representatives can also benefit greatly from mobile technology. Tools can enable sales reps to take orders remotely for faster order processing, view customer invoices, access real-time product and account history, and much more.

4. Better billback/incentive/sample tools. The main goal of your wine and spirits business is to sell, sell, sell. In order to do so, you may need to use sampling stations, incentivize salespeople, or make quantity deals. Without wine and spirits specific technology, tracking and managing these activities can become time consuming and complicated.

Finding technology that can track samples, and generate supplier billbacks for sampled products, can help simplify the process. Being able to manage supplier billbacks for ship and debit pricing, and for sales representative incentive placement goals, ensures the process is handled as efficiently as possible. Wine and spirits specific technology also lets you review billback history, provide suppliers with transaction level billback detail, automatically calculate billback amounts, and more.

5. Improve restrictions, reservations and pricing management. Wine and spirits wholesalers need to be able to seamlessly handle sales restrictions, and inventory reservations, while having flexible pricing options. Trying to manage these items without tools built for your business results in wasted time and money.

Wine and spirits specific technology can help optimize allocation of your inventory to customers. It can enable you to manage sales restrictions on an on- or off-premise basis, or by sales representative, and to set up inventory reservations for important customers. For many wine and spirits companies, it is vital to have flexible pricing tools. Using technology can enable you to set up pricing as needed, including pricing with up to ten quantity breaks, family pricing, different price books for on- or off-premise customers, or price deals for larger customers.

Apprise Software creates, implements and supports supply chain software for wine and spirits wholesalers. Our cutting-edge technology helps companies improve forecasting, reporting, billback processing, sales restrictions, inventory reservations, and pricing management, and includes mobile capabilities optimized for the iPhone, iPad, and other mobile devices. To watch a video on our wine and spirits specific functionality, click here.

Apprise Software in the Cloud

Apprise Software offers on-premise, multi-tenant and private cloud options for global consumer goods companies. Our partnership with Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) gives our customers the reliable, secure and scalable solutions they need to launch their business in the cloud. And Amazon ensures your cloud deployment is backed by a 99.95 percent uptime guarantee. Partnering with Amazon EC2 gives consumer goods companies lower latency and higher throughput. Together, we offer easy-to-deploy, affordable-to-license, subscription-based alternatives to traditional on-premise solutions.

About Apprise Software

Founded in 1984, Apprise Software is a leading provider of integrated ERP and SCM software and services for wine and spirits wholesalers. Leveraging the latest technologies — such as Microsoft® .NET, wireless warehouse solutions, RFID, cloud and iPad applications — along with industry best practices, our solutions deliver reduced costs, improved efficiencies, enhanced revenues and profitability, and a quick return on investment.