Oneof the eight key functions that a member of the marketing channelmust perform is bulk-breaking. This function is done by a wholesalerwhen they buy large quantities in bulk from the suppliers. They sellfewer quantities to the retailers who in turn break it further to beconsumed by users. Wholesalers also offer credit to retailers. Thisis a requirement of a service to the retailers. A wholesaler alsostores products and delivers them to retailers. This allows themanufacturer disburse products that are to reach the retailer in goodtime.
Othermembers of the marketing channel are agents and brokers. Brokersadvertise the manufacturer’s products to wholesalers who buy thosegoods and services. Agents also represent particular manufacturersand represent them to different wholesalers. Brokers also sellproduct contracts for future deliveries. This is applicable in thecase where a wholesaler would like to incorporate a new product infuture. Again, brokers act as an intermediary channel where aretailer makes massive purchases direct from the manufacturer.
Othermembers of the channel are branches of either wholesalers orretailers. Firstly, these branches employ salaried staff who disbursegoods to different destinations. They also cover a particulargeographic area with which they distribute certain products. Again,the branches act as retailers where users buy products or wholesalerswho distribute products to retailers.
Valuedelivery network is a more relevant term to use since it involves allprocesses from the manufacturers to consumers. It encompasses havingthe right product to the right customer in the right place and at theright time. The term supply chain is too limiting since is suggests amake-and-sell view of the business. Again, the term demand chain onlydescribes a buyer-supplier relationship. On the other hand, a valuedelivery network targets companies, distributors and also customerswith the view of making profit.
Channelmembers add value to the marketing system in that they ensure thattasks are performed efficiently and effectively. This is achievedthrough their cooperation at different stages. Firstly, they ensureprompt delivery of goods and services. They also offer competitiveprices where there are many suppliers of the same product. They alsoprovide business advice to sellers and users, therefore making themmore knowledgeable. Finally, channel members avail information aboutproduct mix selection. This is in the case where a company has manyproducts to offer, and they are provided according to need(Rosenbloom, 2013).
Rosenbloom,B. (2013). MarketingChannels: A management view.Cincinnati Ohio. South-Western/Cengage Learning.