I had the pleasure of chatting again with tEDMagazine on the importance of investing now in improving your competitive advantages.
So far, Amazon’s impact on electrical distribution has been largely anecdotal—with one or two customers or bids lost to the online giant here and there—but what happens if the current economic cycle takes a dip? …[W]here does this leave the distributor that didn’t put money and time into its e-commerce approach when business was good? Justin King says distributors that either haven’t invested in e-commerce or are unhappy with their current online selling platforms, should realize that digital is simply another channel. [Digital] must be supported by great offline service, says King, and value-added offerings that a general-line e-tailer like Amazon can’t match (at least not at the present). ‘When you look at challenging Amazon, you have to do it with a ‘digital-plus’ mindset by giving customers the knowledge, expertise, research capabilities, self-service opportunities, and transactional capabilities,’ says King, ‘all complemented by your great offline service.’