Suppliers

Suppliers form an important link in the company's overall customer value delivery system. They provide the resources needed by the company to produce its goods and services. Supplier problems can seriously affect marketing. Marketing managers must watch supply availability and costs. Supply shortages or delays, labor strikes, and other events can cost sales in the short run and damage customer satisfaction in the long run. Rising supply costs may force price increases that can harm the company's sales volume.

Most marketers today treat their suppliers as partners in creating and delivering customer value. For example, the giant home-improvement chain Home Depot works closely with its army of almost 12,000 suppliers. Its Supplier Center Web site (https:// suppliercenter.homedepot.com) provides valuable supplier information and assistance. Supplier scorecards give important feedback that helps suppliers improve their performance. The country's second-largest retailer also hosts regular international supplier workshops, held in the local language so that factory leaders can attend. In return, Home Depot's Supplier Council, consisting of its 15 most strategic suppliers, meets four times a year to provide supplier feedback. In these and other ways, Home Depot actively solicits the "voice of the supplier." It knows that good partner relationship management results in success for all—Home Depot, its suppliers, and, ultimately, its customers.2

100 Blog Commenting Tactics

100 Blog Commenting Tactics

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