Leveraging Virtual Collaboration Tools as You Work From Home

In response to our new (temporary) way of life, you may be among countless businesses reaching out to virtual collaboration tools and other digital support for the very first time. Or, perhaps you’ve dabbled with them in the past but they never became a part of your permanent operations. It can be intimidating to make the switch in such a short period of time, but you’ll discover there’s a wealth of resources right beneath your fingertips. Read on for a list of some of the most helpful virtual collaboration tools available… and tips for using them proactively to manage relationships with retailer clients and your team.

Digital Showrooms 

Your physical showrooms are closed and in-person trade shows have been canceled, but that doesn’t mean you have to stop presenting goods to wholesale clientele. Virtual showrooms are up to the task. Upload your marketing images, logo and other identifying information to personalize your digital showroom’s portal to be completely your own. Next, add all of your products (including in-season immediates). You can share multi-views of every product and you should share high-res images as you would if you were selling to consumers. Finally, invite your wholesale clients to shop your digital showroom via a personalized e-mail marketing campaign using your B2B e-commerce platform. You can even make your showroom available for discovery to other buyers outside of your network and peruse retailer directories to expand your opportunities. Digital showrooms allow buyers to shop your goods and view your press clippings and campaigns from anywhere in the world, 24 hours a day.

Digital Catalogs

You can also share digital catalogs via your B2B wholesale platform. Prep shoppable catalogs and linesheets (fully-integrated with your inventory) for real-time order availability. The digital versions of these tools allow you to quickly edit product offerings and produce special personalized versions for specific retailers and markets. Share them via your B2B e-commerce platform or send them to your buying team for conducting business over virtual meetings and calls. 

Document Collaboration Services

Any documents requiring the involvement of more than one team member should live online and be fully-collaborative. This will give you the oversight to see every edit and present you numerous methods for backing up the files. Google Drive is a popular choice; you can collaborate on Google Docs, Google Sheets and more. Changes are visible in real-time and you can see when more than one person is working on a file at the same time. 

Project Management Services  

The sheer number of back-and-forth emails and texts sent among your team can be stressful, overwhelming and easy to get lost in the shuffle. Look into adding a project management service into your everyday toolbox. You can streamline communication, easily search past conversations, share docs and send direct messages. The right tool for your business depends on your working style and individual needs; Monday.com and Trello are top choices- as well as Slack, which also offers virtual conferencing and integrates with tools like Dropbox. These virtual collaboration tools will transform the way you do business from afar.