What is GSA Market Intelligence and How to Benefit From It

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GSA Market Research; what the government buys and how to aim for success

The federal buyers are out to procure a huge variety of products and services. The government ‘s needs are basically the same as those of the buyers in the commercial sector; in other words, anything that is purchased by companies or individuals for their abundant needs, gets offered and sold through the GSA marketplace, as well. Be it food catering, personal fitness training, logistics and trucking, IT and finance, construction and engineering, restaurant or office supply, furniture and building maintenance, and endless other fields; the federal agencies need it all…

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Every GSA vendor should constantly be aware that getting on a GSA Schedule, albeit a crucial step to landing government business, is just a start. The GSA market is a fairly complexed and competitive place, and so all possible efforts should be made to stay on top of the game when it comes to knowing what to sell and at what prices. 

Market analysis revolves around what other vendors are offering within one’s category, exactly what items currently sell well due to being in high demand and should therefore be added to one’s contract, and how high one’s existing prices rank on GSA Advantage. 

Conducting Market Research, step by step

GSA marketing does not need to be overly convoluted and cumbersome. Making market research systematized and relevant requires basic conceptual understanding, as well as the right tools at one’s disposal. Price Reporter’s market intelligence service offers a thorough and sophisticated analysis, which takes in consideration the various industry partners and their offerings, current and forecasted procurement trends, as well as individual circumstances of the GSA vendor requesting the analysis.  Here are some market intelligence tools and options, which may be utilized either separately, or in a combined approach, for maximum effectiveness:

  1. Generate Opportunity Reports: include information on top-selling products, such as part numbers, manufacturer names, total volume of sales, supplier info with internal SKU’s whenever available, and product name, so that a vendor can add these items to their catalog with greater ease. 
  2. Apply opportunity reports will help to strategically identify which products to add, in order to grow the volume of sales.
  3. Competition Reports: identify and pull live pricing information from GSA Advantage, show a vendor’s price rank, including information such as total sales for each item, competitors’ pricing, total annual volume of sales on a given item. 
  4. Optimization: the data acquired through competition reports enables vendors to favorably adjust their pricing by either increasing or lowering their minimum margins, putting items on temporary sale if needed, while making sure they are kept in the highest possible price rank on the GSA Advantage.

Visit www.pricereporter.com for more information on how the above procedures would be tailored individually to your business.

Want to learn more about Requests for Information (RFIs)?

An RFI, or Request for Information is a method by which procuring agencies collect information from perspective vendors, that could potentially fulfill either current or upcoming purchasing needs. All GSA-authorized vendors are granted access to eBuy, the GSA’s bidding portal, enabling them to stay current on all RFIs that are posted within their industry segment. 

By responding to an RFI, a vendor makes herself known to the procurement officer in charge. Provided the vendor satisfies the general parameters of what the officer is looking for, there is a good chance that she may either be given the job, or be invited to participate in a bid, along with other potential candidates. RFIs are an essential part of any vendors effort to secure those long, high-volume contracts. 

Marketing and advertisement 

Many GSA contractors often ask how they can solicit themselves to potential buyers. The answer is not a simple one. As a rule, government procurement professionals’ frown upon direct sales attempts. It is not customary for vendors to simply cold- call the various agencies and offer their products or services out of the blue. Even if the right contact info is somehow obtained by the vendors’ business development specialists, chances are, their efforts will be to no avail, and possibly even cause more harm than good. 

There are ways though, to make oneself known and accessible to the gov’t buyers:

1. Attending trade shows is one; there is an annual GSA fair, that vendors are able to attend, and establish connections by simply meeting the right people and establishing continuous relationships with industry partners. That is the main benefits of such events, and it should most certainly be taken advantage of. 

2. Engage in indirect solicitation; instead of cold-calling people directly, one may 

post brochures and catalogs on various online platforms, that a gov’t buyer may be frequenting, as well as physically sending these materials to a publicly known agency address which is suited for such purposes.  

3. Another effective way, which has been mentioned previously, is by making sure one’s GSA Advantage catalog contains accurate descriptions, easily searched by buyers; pictures, if applicable, help a great deal, as well.  Searching up what’s is in demand currently, and adding those to existing catalogs would be most helpful. 

4. And last but not least, attractive pricing is one of the decisive considerations, that most buyers will immediately consider as a crucial factor in their buying tactics. Procurement officers are obligated to save the tax payer’s dollars, so it’s a no-brainer, that the best priced products and services will be prioritized. Once again, GSA market research needs to be performed to this effect, whether internally, or through a consultant that offers such.  

Conclusion

Looking from any angle, one cannot underestimate the importance of GSA market research and analysis, when it comes to growing and increasing the sales flow. For any vendor, aspiring to make the best out of their schedule, there has to be an on-going, regular pursuit of growth and competitiveness. Those that are looking to get it right off the bat may contact the dedicated consultants at Price Reporter, and they will gladly assist.

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