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What Is D2C (Direct-To-Consumer)? A Straightforward Guide

d2c direct to consumer business model dtc company sell directly to customers

Dealing with retailers isn't always an easy process.

You've got this great product ready to ship out to customers interested in what you have to offer. The sales are made, and the profit rolls in. Well, after the retailer and distributor and any other middleman that you work with take their cut, that is.

The fact of the matter is, for many types of businesses, the age of the internet has rendered the idea of a middleman obsolete. It is easier than ever to directly connect and do business with your audience all on your own.

This business practice is called Direct-to-Consumer, or D2C, and it is quickly taking over the world of online business.

What Is Direct to Consumer (D2C)?

Direct-to-Consumer means pretty much what it sounds like; a business model that opts out of retailers and marketplaces in favor of selling your products yourself, directly to your consumers.

Direct to consumer has a lot of great benefits that make it worth considering for your business.

By dealing directly with your own customers, you can get a better understanding of their interests, and can better gauge trends in your sales. After all, you aren't reliant on the practices of a retailer, which can themselves affect sales volume for products.

You are no longer reliant on retailers, which gives you more control over your pricing, marketing, and even product releases. Your success is no longer contingent in any way on the success of a retailer to sell your product for you. 

Plenty of successful businesses have already implemented direct to consumer practices into their business model.

Since the early days of the internet, D2C was the most popular approach for smaller, independent businesses to sell their products. But these days, even large companies have made the switch to some extent.

Have you ever bought a phone directly from the manufacturer's website? That's direct to consumer marketing in action.

And all the things you might've thought while doing so, things like "I'm glad I didn't have to go to the store for this", or "that was really convenient" are exactly the kinds of things your customers are likely to think as well.

Even media companies are beginning to get in on the trend. Peter Faricy, the chief executive for Discovery's direct to consumer, gave an interview discussing how this model can transform businesses.

And services like Patreon, Soundcloud, and of course Youtube are other examples of platforms where this kind of approach is used by service-based businesses.

Time to Connect With Your Customers

Direct to consumer brands enjoy a lot of benefits that other, more traditional businesses often do not. 

The D2C business model gives you much greater control over the smaller details of how your product gets to your customers, and gives you greater insights into trends and data that is useful in your sales.

Of course, D2C doesn't have to replace traditional business options. You can implement it alongside a traditional model and still get many of these benefits. So take the jump and set up a direct to consumer option. Regardless of your audience, there's a lot to be gained from the DTC company model and sell directly to customers.

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