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Distributor Selling Trends Survey

Posted on 5.14.2007

GlobalSpec, a vertical search provider for the engineering, technical and industrial communities, released its 2007 Distributor Selling Trends Survey and found that (no surprise to me) that an integrated online presence is a must. The results of the entire survey can be found at GlobalSpec.

Some key information from the survey:

  • 78% of respondents go online first when searching for a new distributor
  • 45% of respondents stated the main reason they contacted distributors they have not purchased from in the past was that a current distributor did not have the right product
  • 87% of respondents purchase parts online
  • 69% of respondents search for parts using a part number at least once a month
  • Availability & delivery was the most important factor when choosing a distributor
  • Respondents stated the most important features on a distributor’s Web site were up-to-date content and technical specifications

I'm impressed with the similarity in the survey to Jason Prescott's recent article on "Vertical Search Engines: Pinpoint Targeting" which ran in the May issue of Website Magazine. The GlobalSpec results point to a gap between important features technical buyers seek in a distributor’s online presence (up-to-date content, technical specifications, searchable online catalogs) and those buyers’ satisfaction levels with distributors’ Web sites in delivering those features.

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