The ratio of the direct to the indirect channel has changed considerably since the start of the 21st century in favour of indirect channels and eMarketplaces.
This shift is particularly pronounced in the hi-tech markets (IT, electronics and engineering) where indirect channels make up 66% of total sales.
In 1997 the figure was 53% – so quite a shift from the historically favoured direct route to market.
This trend towards indirect channels will continue and has been exacerbated by the recent recession.
At times of economic hardship companies are obliged maintain sales levels with a reduced budget.
The indirect channel continues to offer greater flexibility at a lower cost than direct if harnessed in the right way, but the right channel partner for your business needs to be closely assessed, in particular in relation to their digital capabilities (including Social Media and real-time transaction handling).