E-commerce implementation by manufacturers today may be traveling in low gear, but look for this to up-shift dramatically in the near future, according to a recent survey done by the National Association of Manufacturers and Ernst & Young LLP.
Presently, about 30% of all manufacturers are using the web for sales or procurement. Of those manufacturers surveyed, only 1% claimed to be in the advanced stages of selling directly over the internet. But according to the survey, a vast majority of those companies not selling directly have plans to do so, and can be classified as already being in the information sharing, information exchange, and the transaction focus phases of e-commerce implementation.
The desire to increase top-line revenue is overwhelmingly the goal of manufacturers’ e-commerce wishes, according to the survey. Broader customer reach and seeking new business opportunities ranked as the top two objectives of those companies surveyed. Interestingly, only 53% replied that they were after cost savings, and even less were focused on streamlining business and increasing supplier reach.
What this means is that manufacturers are realizing that a successful e-commerce strategy can equate into increased sales, and that if they don’t have a plan in place, chances are that their competition does.