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Supply Chain

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Producers normally use a number of marketing intermediaries for getting their products to users. Marketing intermediaries bear a variety of names such as sole selling agents, marketers, wholesalers, distributors, stockists, franchised dealers, retailers, brokers and jobbers. All such intermediaries constitute the supply chain. The depot/ showrooms and other direct outlets also form part of the supply chain.

Producers normally use a number of marketing intermediaries for getting their products to users. Marketing intermediaries bear a variety of names such as sole selling agents, marketers, wholesalers, distributors, stockists, franchised dealers, retailers, brokers and jobbers. All such intermediaries constitute the supply chain. The depot/ showrooms and other direct outlets also form part of the supply chain.

Supply chains play a pivotal role in the successful marketing of most products, especially consumer products. First of all, supply chains bring together the makers and the users in an efficient and economic manner. It will not be practical for any manufacturer to organize a network of his own selling points throughout the market and sell his products directly to consumers, totally avoiding outside distribution channels. Just like mass manufacturing, mass distribution needs large resources in terms of money, materials and manpower.

No manufacturer can easily command such resources. Even assuming that the resources could be found, the question arises whether it would be advantageous for the manufacturer to carry out the distribution function by himself, totally avoiding marketing intermediaries. Analysis shows that there are more disadvantages than advantages in doing so. If intermediaries are not there, the firm will have to make direct contacts with far too many widely-scattered customers. Marketing intermediaries minimize the number of contacts the firm has to make to sell its products. In other words, these intermediaries confer on the firm the vital advantage of distributional efficiency.

Supply chains combine the products and components manufactured by different firms, and offer them in the form of assortments that are convenient to final users. The final users, in most cases, actually need an assortment of items; they do not prefer to shop at outlets, which fail to provide an assortment of all the products that they require.

Supply Chain provides detailed information on Supply Chain, Supply Chain Management, Supply Chain Management Software, Supply Chain Management Solutions and more. Supply Chain is affliated with Knowledge Management Systems.
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