Colombia has stood out for its rapid adoption of communication technologies. WhatsApp has become the most popular messaging application in the country, with an astonishing market share of 94%. This means that virtually every Colombian connected to the internet uses WhatsApp as their primary means of communication.
So, what does this mean for large consumer packaged goods (CPGs) companies? How have they leveraged this phenomenon to boost their operations and address the challenges posed by digital transformation?
Increased Store Penetration and Sales Effectiveness
One of the main challenges faced by CPGs is increasing their store penetration and improving sales effectiveness. Traditionally, this process involved regular visits by sales representatives to stores and retailers to promote products and place orders. However, WhatsApp has transformed this dynamic by enabling constant and efficient communication between sales representatives and store owners.
Sales representatives can send catalogs, offers, and inventory updates directly to store owners through the application. This not only saves time and resources but also ensures that products are available when customers seek them. The increase in sales effectiveness translates into higher sales growth for CPGs.
Reduction in Service Costs
Reducing service costs is another important goal for CPGs in their digital transformation. Previously, maintaining an extensive sales force and managing the logistics of store visits was costly. WhatsApp offers a cost-effective solution by allowing conversations and orders to be conducted virtually, eliminating the need for expensive in-person visits.
Increased Average Ticket Size
The strategic use of WhatsApp has also led to an increase in the average ticket size of purchases. Sales representatives can send personalized recommendations to store owners, promoting complementary products or highlighting special offers. This incentivizes store owners to place larger orders and customers to buy more products.
Significant Sales Growth
Ultimately, WhatsApp has contributed to a significant increase in sales for CPGs. The ease of communication, product availability, and personalized offers have transformed how companies reach end customers through store owners. Conversational commerce has proven to be an effective strategy for driving sales growth in Colombia.
Digital transformation has required CPGs to adapt to a new sales approach through WhatsApp. Store owners valued their relationships with sales representatives, knew them, and trusted them. They were hesitant to adopt new technologies and change their order processes.
Sales representatives, on the other hand, showed some resistance to using digital tools, perceiving them as a potential threat to their relationship with store owners. Both parties needed a channel that would respect and enhance their existing relationship but also open a direct line of communication between the brand and store owners.
A Bridge between Two Worlds
WhatsApp has become a bridge between these two worlds, providing a communication channel that store owners and sales representatives were already using and comfortable with. This has facilitated platform adoption and boosted the scalability of CPG operations.
As CPGs have sought to make the most of WhatsApp, they have discovered that personal conversations and relevant local offers are crucial for increasing sales in Colombia. While having more flexibility in placing orders was desirable, customers were not willing to change a process that already worked.
Store owners and customers already have a natural "digital behavior." For them, sending messages to their customers and local sales representatives is a crucial daily business activity. WhatsApp, in this context, seamlessly fits into their existing workflow, making adoption smooth.
WhatsApp has proven to be an essential tool for CPGs looking to embrace digital transformation in Colombia, and Yalo has become a key ally in paving the path to success. Contact us!