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Appropos Digital clicks for retail sales

February 27, 2013
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Appropos is an enterprise sales software company that provides a content distribution platform for the iPad. Photo via fb.com

A new sales tool could make life digitally easier for sales reps.

The Appropos iPad app allows retail sales reps to have digital access for all product sales needs by presenting full details and images of products via an iPad app. The app also allows orders to be made digitally on the spot.

It was created by the seven-person team of partners at Appropos Digital, a Grand Rapids software development startup located in Suite 415 at 820 Monroe Ave. NW.

Appropos CEO Jon Faber said the firm was started to fill a business need in the sales community through their work with Saucony, a running shoe company.

Faber said the app and his company were created to simplify a field rep’s job by allowing him or her to show customers full access product content, including catalog, video and real time inventory, as well as take orders digitally.

“With that data, we can access the majority of a field rep’s day,” he said. “We’re more than a presentation. We’re the job that needs to get done in placing an order and making money.”

The app is designed for interactive content distribution for the wholesale enterprise marketplace, Faber said, an important distinction from the consumer market. The app is only accessible on the web and iPad, but future clients and platforms, such as mobile cell phones, will be included if there’s a need for it, he said, adding that customization for each company is available.

Christopher Morse, Appropos vice president of marketing, echoed Faber, adding that all the files for catalogs and database information, which are normally accessed online using a data connection, can now be utilized anywhere within the app.

“It’s an enterprise sales platform for wholesale,” Morse said. “It’s basically a set of tools that are with a sales rep through their whole day to sell, pitch, show and place orders while they’re with the client and away from the client.”

Digital cataloging and content distribution feels like a different world for sales reps, Morse said, like moving listening from a cassette tape to downloading music on iTunes.

The move, however, is worth it, he said, and it is changing the game because it allows sales reps to access everything offline and be able to present brand assets all at once.

“It’s a different feel, but it’s absolutely more efficient,” Morse said. “It’s making reps faster. It’s giving them access to a lot of information they wouldn’t have.”

Appropos has serviced Wolverine Worldwide, a Rockford-based footwear manufacturer, and its brands Cat Footwear, Merrell, and the recently purchased Saucony, which Wolverine acquired last spring.

Tim Knowlton, Saucony vice president of field sales, said using the Appropos app has greatly enhanced field sales, praising the app for combining simplicity and experience, benefiting both sales reps and retail buyers.

“It’s really easy for them to place orders, for them to access our catalogs, our videos, and really create a great presentation to the customer,” Knowlton said in a testimonial video. “Any time we can take our brand and show it in a different way, a technical way through digital media, it really helps us elevate their perception of what we do at Saucony.”

More information is available at http://approposdigital.com/

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