How to Use AI-Based Assistants in B2B Wholesale

Read how AI-based assistants are taking wholesale sales to a new level and helping companies achieve their goals more efficiently.

According to the Federation of German Wholesale, Foreign Trade and Services (BGA), wholesale and foreign trade companies are increasingly realising the potential of using artificial intelligence.

Although many companies are still in the early stages, the opportunities are increasingly being recognised. According to the BGA, two applications of AI in wholesale are particularly popular: AI in logistics & inventory planning and AI-based analysis of customers & buying decisions.

This article will look at AI-based customer and buying decision analysis. This application area of AI in wholesale supports primarily sales and internal customer service. But what exactly is behind AI-based assistants in wholesale distribution?

What are AI-based assistants for sales?

AI-based assistants for wholesale deliver specific recommendations from predictive sales software to the sales team. Predictive sales software analyses thousands of transactional data points (e.g., from an inventory management or ERP system). The software uses this data to create accurate sales forecasts using AI and machine learning. That includes Cross-selling predictions, customer churn predictions, and pricing predictions.

An AI-based assistant forwards the most likely forecasts to the sales team and suggests specific actions based on the data.

How do AI-based assistants help wholesale distribution?

AI-based predictive sales software with a built-in assistant goes beyond simply analysing historical sales data and uses advanced algorithms to create accurate sales forecasts. That allows companies to plan their sales goals better and optimize their sales strategies. The software enables proactive adaptation to changing conditions and helps increase the profitability of wholesale distribution.

Predictive sales software evaluates historical customer data and identifies current buying patterns. The software can precisely segment customers by identifying similarities and differences in customer preferences. That allows cross-selling predictions to be made with a high probability of occurrence.

It also enables a targeted approach and individualised support for different customer groups. The software increases customer loyalty and satisfaction through personalised marketing strategies and tailored offers.

An AI-based assistant can warn sales staff early before a customer churns. That gives the sales department enough time to initiate appropriate customer retention measures.

Last but not least, “pricing” and particularly “dynamic pricing” is a much-discussed topic in wholesale companies. There are many traditional rules and calculations for how wholesalers price their products. However, these “rigid structures” of pricing prevent dynamic adjustments. That is where AI-based predictive sales software comes in. Based on historical prices, the software can calculate price acceptance per customer and product and identify pricing inconsistencies in current pricing.

How can wholesalers get started with AI in sales?

Starting with artificial intelligence (AI) in sales requires a thoughtful approach and gradual integration. Here are some practical steps wholesalers can take to get started with AI in sales:

Identify business processes for the use of AI:
Wholesalers should identify specific business processes in sales that can benefit from AI technologies. These could include inventory planning, customer segmentation, or sales forecasting.

Select appropriate AI applications and vendors:
Different types of AI applications in sales exist, such as predictive sales analytics software systems or customer service chatbots. The selection should be based on the specific requirements and goals of the wholesale business. The next step is to find the right AI vendor. This blog post highlights three of the best predictive sales analytics vendors.

Consider Data Quality and Integration:
AI systems are only as good as the data they have. The good news is that wholesalers need data they already have for AI-based software: Historical sales data from your ERP or enterprise resource planning system. Experienced AI vendors can consult with you, conduct a data audit, and plan which data sets are best to start with.

Run pilot projects:
To minimise risk, starting with pilot projects is a good idea. These can be used to test the effectiveness of AI solutions in a controlled environment before a more comprehensive implementation occurs.

Employee training and awareness:
The introduction of AI often requires a change in working methods. Employees should be trained and sensitised in using AI to promote acceptance and cooperation.

Use feedback and be iterative:
After implementation, it is essential to gather feedback from employees and customers. The insights gained can be used to continuously improve the AI models and further optimize their use in sales.


How to Use AI-Based Assistants in B2B Wholesale – Conclusion

Using AI-based assistants in B2B wholesale distribution opens up new opportunities for companies to increase efficiency and achieve their goals. Wholesale and foreign trade increasingly recognise the potential of artificial intelligence, especially in logistics and inventory planning, as well as customer and buying decision analysis.

AI-based customer and buying decision analysis, mainly through predictive sales software systems, is revolutionising sales. This software analyses vast amounts of transactional data and creates accurate sales forecasts, including cross-selling, churn, and pricing. The AI-based assistants communicate these predictions with high probability to the sales team and suggest concrete actions.

The benefits range from better sales planning to sales strategy optimisation, enabling proactive adaptation to market conditions and increasing the profitability of wholesale distribution.

AI-based predictive sales software recognises current buying patterns, enables a targeted approach to different customer groups, improves customer loyalty and enables dynamic pricing to increase wholesale margins.
When do you start?


Further Read:


Possible uses of AI in logistics

Where artificial intelligence is already part of everyday life