It’s no secret that Amazon would love to take over wholesale distribution. As any good marketing professional knows, providing services outside of products and price is imperative for a strong value proposition. Included below is a screen shot of one of Amazon’s latest efforts to do just that. Note that the testimonials from “pros” are heavily weighted toward contracting. By helping service providers to obtain leads, Amazon’s brand equity grows. Ultimately, service providers may start to prefer Amazon, choose to buy from them, etc.
On a related note, Google is also focusing on contractors with their “Local Service Ads” in major markets. This program will eventually be introduced into medium and small markets as well. As it rolls out, this is likely to throw electrical, HVAC and plumbing contractors into something of a tizzy. With everyone trying to reach the top of these search results, it will almost certainly increase the need for marketing at the contractor level.
It will be interesting to watch this battle between juggernauts: Amazon vs Google.
In my opinion, wholesalers should view these developments as opportunities. Why not get in front of this new reality and offer to help contractors navigate the complexities of these new twists to the digital arena? Not only would contractors benefit by harnessing additional marketing possibilities, suppliers would benefit by becoming an even more vital part of the channel itself – a trusted source for both strategic ideas and readily-available products.