As customers search for more personalized offerings, DTC (Direct-to-Consumer) commerce has become the perfect option. Recent data shows that 55% of consumers prefer to buy directly from brands rather than through any other sales channel. The growth of e-commerce has paved the way for the DTC trend, particularly throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
What is DTC?
A direct to consumer commerce strategy involves a business owning their customers’ sales experience from start to finish. The strategy centres around one main channel from your business directly to your customer, with no resellers involved.
Having a brick-and-mortar store is an example of DTC retail, yet the main growth in DTC sales has been through online transactions. Online sales and access to products directly through social media have become increasingly popular, aided by customer demand to obtain products and services that suit their needs throughout the pandemic. DTC commerce is seen as reliable for the consumer, and so throughout these turbulent times the DTC market has been growing steadily in the background.
The Advantages of Selling DTC
E-commerce and DTC strategies provide a range of advantages for all business types;
- Increased customer loyalty: The personalized experience offered via DTC commerce is attractive to customers as their needs are catered to directly. In turn, brand loyalty is built for your business which helps reduce customer churn.
- Decreased exposure to competition: With a DTC strategy your business’s offerings are no longer sold alongside those of your competitors. Whether in a brick-and-mortar shop or buying online, customers are engaged in your products only, protecting your company from outside competition.
- More data on customers to optimize marketing and sales efforts: Businesses can track the shopping experience of their customers and gain greater information on buying habits when they sell DTC. The activity on your business’s webpage provides data that can be used to fine-tune your offerings and the sales process. Documenting at what point in the buying experience customers drop off (for example) can be a useful tool when looking at adjusting your website’s content, pricing strategy, or general sales approach.
- Recurring revenue via subscriptions: Offering direct to customer subscriptions is a great way to grow your revenue. Recurring subscriptions keep customers consistently engaged with your business and its offerings. With DTC subscriptions you can provide an unmatched level of flexibility and customization for your customers.
- End-to-end control: When customers buy from your business directly you’re in control of their entire sales and brand experience. Having access to full customization over the customer’s purchasing journey means that you can tailor it as much as you want. Nobody knows your business better than you do- DTC commerce allows you to take advantage of that knowledge.
- Custom pricing: A DTC commerce strategy allows your business to have total control over its pricing. Custom pricing is a great advantage as businesses can choose to either offer a more competitive pricing to their customers, or establish a more lucrative profit margin for the company. In many cases, when businesses take the DTC path, both of those can be achieved simultaneously.
Tools to Aid you in your DTC Efforts
When shifting your focus to direct to consumer sales, there are a range of tools that you should seriously consider for an easier process.
An e-commerce solution is the most important tool, as it will allow you to easily connect with and accept payments from customers. Commercetools is one of the leading platforms globally for B2C and B2B commerce. The latest Billforward x Commercetools integrations will provide more flexibility to your subscription business and aid your business growth.
A Billing Software
Billing customers and processing recurring payments requires a sophisticated recurring billing platform. This platform should have the reporting capabilities to take advantage of the key data that selling DTC provides so that when there’s the opportunity for your business to grow, your billing platform isn’t holding you back.
A Quality CRM
In order to keep track of both potential customers and ongoing sales, a quality CRM like HubSpot or Salesforce is essential for creating a successful DTC business. With Billforward x HubSpot and Billforward x Salesforce integrations, essential data will always be there for you, right at your fingertips.
Billforward: Your Ally in DTC Sales
Billforward’s advanced billing solution is a perfect partner for your DTC journey. Our integrations with powerful e-commerce solutions and CRM’s means that every aspect of your DTC strategy can be tailored towards your business’s success. The ability to customize Billforward’s subscription management and billing software has unique advantages that will improve your subscription business’s results.
Don’t want to take our word for it? See how Billforward helped Danone launch their DTC offering.