The role of the tech distributor is changing, says PCR editor Dominic Sacco

Disties must establish themselves as serious specialists

The role of the tech distributor is changing, says PCR editor Dominic Sacco in this opinion piece.

The role of the PC and tech distributor is changing.

With the cloud and managed services providing an attractive source of revenue for resellers, suppliers are expected to provide more than just pick, pack and ship.

Our survey shows that resellers expect more from their suppliers than ever before. They want expert advice, great prices and they want goods delivered yesterday.

More distributors are experimenting with new initiatives, partner programmes and special deals to remain competitive. Beyond that, the shift from box to service continues. As I write this, Symantec has trimmed its portfolio to phase out boxed product and move to an online subscription model. Expect more of this ahead – another challenge for box shifters.

Additionally, with the Internet of Things, wearable tech and online services set to reshape the market, there is a fantastic opportunity for distributors to stay ahead of the market and establish themselves as serious specialists – not just suppliers.

But for all the emerging categories and ‘value-add’ extras, they must not forget their core strength: supplying great computer gear on time.

50 per cent of resellers tell us they are frustrated by pricing and low stock levels, so there is still work to be done. However, there are plenty of things they are doing right: 80 per cent of resellers say their disties are helpful, praising them for product knowledge. You can also hear from suppliers themselves, who have been pitched questions from our own Retail Advisory Board.

Speaking of distributors doing well, we’re on the hunt for the UK’s top account managers. We love recognising great talent here at PCR, so please nominate an account manager who has particularly impressed you by emailing me their name, company, job title and explain why they should be included. We’ll publish the best in an upcoming issue.

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