British American Tobacco South Africa implemented direct store sales (DSS) at the end of April 2008. The service is offered to customers who meet certain criteria, in addition to the service that was previously offered through a wholesale network.
What is DSS?
It is a well established distribution method for many product categories in South Africa. British American Tobacco has direct distribution arrangements in many countries including Canada, Hungary, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand.
We have used this global experience and expertise to ensure that we are able to offer retailers that meet our qualifying criteria a benchmark service, using the latest technology. Through our DSS model, these retailers have the choice of purchasing products directly from us. Our representatives are responsible for taking and delivering product orders.
How does Direct Store Sales (DSS) work?
- The retailer orders stock directly from a British American Tobacco representative
- The order is picked and packed at a British American Tobacco distribution centre
- The order is delivered to the retailer
- The retailer pays for the order
The whole process is enabled by the latest distribution technology meaning orders can be delivered in an efficient and timely manner.
Why Direct store sales (DSS)?
The South African tobacco market is dynamic and has seen significant changes over the last few years. In addition, it continues to be shaped by social, regulatory and competitive forces. Organisations such as ours have to understand the impact of changes in the market, and revise their business models accordingly in order to ensure their long-term sustainability.
In deciding the best method for distributing products to retail outlets, we considered a broad range of options, issues and opportunities to identify a method that most effectively meets customer and consumer needs. DSS provided us with the opportunity to establish a true business relationship with our customers to ensure that the needs of consumers are met.
What does DSS mean for retailers?
Retailers that meet our qualifying criteria have the choice of whether to purchase products directly from us or to continue to buy product from an existing supplier. Should they choose to take advantage of our DSS offer they deal directly with a British American Tobacco South Africa representative. We have an established sales force, fully equipped to assist our retail customers in growing their business.
Through weekly face-to-face meetings, the representative assists retailers in areas such as order management, new product introductions, product quality, product returns, and merchandising. Through the use of the latest technology and personnel expertise, we have effective systems in place to ensure seamless order processing, account payment, and payment reconciliation.
For any queries related to the new DSS model, contact our dedicated Customer Service Centre on 0800 CSC BAT (0800 272 228).