Amazon Business is projected to make $52 billion in sales by 2023. For distributors to fend off this AI-powered giant, they’ll need to understand and adopt AI strategies of their own.
To understand how vulnerable a distribution vertical is to disruption, look at the relationship between the product category’s complexity and the ability for the distributor to deliver that product using common small-package carriers.
Marketplaces are among the most successful business models of the modern era. From Amazon to Google to Grainger’s Zoro, there’s clearly good money in the marketplace.
If you’re a distributor, keep an eye on White Cap, which – thanks to the help of CD&R and The Sterling Group – is modeling one of the only viable paths to a successful future.
The Wholesale Change crew will talk about how, why and if you should build your own marketplace to fight back.
Distributors are learning how to build cultures that drive innovation; don’t wait. The disruptors are at the gate and the battle for distribution supremacy will likely go to the swift and not the strong.
Distributors worry that Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) is assuming key distributor roles and erasing them from the equation. The service picks, packs, ships and even manages returns for retailers and distributors, as well as holds inventory in Amazon fulfillment centers.
If Amazon Business owns the customer, warehouses your products, does the picking, packing and shipping and handles the entire transaction – why do they need you?
It’s fair to question whether these events are correlated or it’s just a coincidence that Amazon Business is (apparently) thriving in various international markets while Grainger is not.
Amazon is the most obvious example of marketplaces that carry B2B SKUs, but you can find them on Google Shopping, Walmart.com, Alibaba, eBay Business & Industrial, Zoro and other websites, too.