In August, Walmart announced that it would acquire Jet.com for $3.3bn. The merger may put Walmart in a better position to go up against e-tailing behemoth Amazon, and possibly even strengthen the former's footing in the business-to-business e-commerce space in the future.
When a supplier makes a major change to its corporate structure, brand name, and/or go-to-market strategy, the implications for its distributor base can be significant. In most cases, these changes present both challenges and opportunities for the companies that are out on the front lines selling the manufacturer's products on a daily basis.
The numbers are in and all signs point to a future saturated with business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce sales. Following in the footsteps of its business-to-consumer (B2C) cousin, B2B e-commerce is quickly becoming the shopping and purchasing method of choice for a wide range of buyers - including customers in the electrical industry.
After surveying 246 National Association of Electrical Distributors companies (102 distributors and 144 manufacturers) for the recent Reimagining Distributor and Manufacturer Relationships study, the message came through loud and clear: Both distributors and manufacturers need to put more time and effort into strengthening their supply chain relationships.
E-tailing behemoths like Amazon Business are infringing on electrical distributors' turf. Large distributors continue to hone and refine their e-commerce offerings. And finally, mobile e-commerce (or, m-commerce) - driven by the consumer who has grown more comfortable making purchases on smartphones and other mobile devices - is on track to hit $700bn by 2017, according to research firm Digi-Capital.