How can I analyze the distribution systems?

If you are a manufacturer, you need to figure out how your prospective product will be delivered to your customers. To find out this, you should ask yourself three strategic questions:

a)What are the current distribution channels and who are controlling them?

b)Are there any alternative distribution channels available?

c)Are there any new distribution channels that will emerge?

Many large industrial companies use their own sales force to sell directly to their customers. On the other hand, smaller firms might sell their products through wholesale distributors, brokers or agents, who then resell the goods to end users. Generally speaking, companies that sell more directly to the end users have more control over their marketing efforts, but also face greater risks.

If only a few companies are controlling a distribution channel, you may need to consider alternatives by looking at how your competitors are distributing their goods.