Also used are channels containing manufacturers' agents, industrial distributors or both agents and distributors.
Most producers have dual or multiple channels so that the distribution system can be adjusted for various target markets. Channel integration
Integration of marketing channels brings various activities under one channel member's management.
Vertical integration combines two or more stages of the channel under one management. The vertical marketing system is managed centrally for the mutual benefit of all channel members.
Wholesalers are individuals or organizations that facilitate and expedite primarily wholesale transactions.More than half of all goods are exchanged through wholesalers, although distribution of any product requires some wholesaling functions, whether or not a wholesaling institution is involved,
For producers, wholesalers:perform specialized accumulation and allocation functions for a number of products
- let the producers concentrate on manufacturing products.
- either full-service wholesalers, offering the widest possible range of wholesaling functions
- or limited-service wholesalers, providing only some marketing services and specializing in a few functions.
Full-service merchant wholesalers include:
- general merchandise wholesalers offering a wide but relatively shallow product mix,
- limited-line wholesalers offering extensive assortments in a few product lines
- specialty-line wholesalers offering depth in a single product line or in a few items within a line. Rack jobbers are specialty-line wholesalers that own and service display racks in supermarkets and drugstores.
There are four types of limited-service merchant wholesalers:
- cash-and-carry wholesalers sell to small businesses, require payment in cash and do not deliver
- truck wholesalers sell a limited line of products from their own trucks directly to customers
- drop shippers own goods and negotiate sales but never take possession of products
- mail order wholesalers sell to retail, industrial and institutional buyers through direct-mail catalogues.
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