Third Quarter Digital B2B Sales Trending Upwards Across Industries
YTD digital buyer activity drives robust B2B sales in a whole spectrum of industries. DigitalCommerce360 has a few articles on it, including one from an industrial pipe distributor – not your typical online purchase!
Some people still think B2B technical online sales is an oxymoron. Many in manufacturing think that technical, consultative sales are not suited to an online-only environment. These stories are proof points that industrial and commercial enterprises can increase their online sales profitably. Read more here:
Even Home Depot and Lowes reported higher growth rates for online sales, particularly for higher dollar amount orders coming from their industrial and commercial buyers.
Supply Chain bounce back at Grainger/Zoro
Grainger was hit hard during the pandemic, particularly with all the supply chain disruptions. Good news now, though. Sales are way up at Grainger, where topline revenue increased 17% Q/Q. Even more impressive are Zoro’s results. Zoro, the online-only unit at Grainger, reported a whopping 27% increase in sales, Q/Q, to $217M, so I guess the covid-era supply chain issues are lessening! Read more here, including where the CEO talks about how Grainger was hit hard during the pandemic, particularly with all the supply chain disruptions. Good news now, though. Sales are way up at Grainger, where topline revenue increased 17% Q/Q. Even more impressive are Zoro’s results. Zoro, the online-only unit at Grainger, reported a whopping 27% increase in sales, Q/Q, to $217M, so I guess the covid-era supply chain issues are lessening! Read more here, including where the CEO talks about how online sales were allowing this old-timey company to expand profitably in a digital-only channel!
Chrome Platers are Fighting Back
EPA and OSHA regulations are restricting or eliminating the use of hexavalent chromium in many plating processes, nudging the industry towards trivalent chromium. Most platers – and I cannot understate this – HATE this idea. See an example:
Akin to the fight between incandescent and fluorescent bulbs, both sides are girding for war and it’s getting ugly. Most platers are thinking of exiting the business. See a detailed technical analysis here:
This will likely take a scarce resource – finishers – and make them scarcer.
Plating Companies can look forward to even more scrutiny from the EPA
Environmental considerations are and always will hit the finishing industry hard. This is a chemical-heavy industry. The European Union, through such measures as the End-of-Life Vehicle Directive (ELV), has practically eliminated the use of chromium in the automotive industry, and Detroit automakers are following suit.
Next up: the EPA just announced it will start visiting plating shops to review their use of PFAS (per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances) in industrial settings. Oh, goody.
So Much to Digitize! So Little Time!
Not sure where to go next on your digital transformation? The helpful folks at the Digital Transformation for Manufacturers Program – it’s a result of a NIST cooperative agreement award to Ohio MEP – have published an extensive assessment to help manufacturers on their digital transformation. The assessment covers 8 different areas, from production to logistics to smart products.
I took the assessment. It’s quite extensive and is a great list in one place for manufacturers. I would recommend just getting a copy of the questions – there are dozens if not hundreds.
Important news for additive manufacturing
LEGO Debuts First 3D-Printed Element, it’s a little duck! You can’t buy it, its given away along with one of the “experiences” they offer at their LEGO House Store in Denmark.
You would have thought that LEGO would be at the forefront of 3D printing (small, plastic, lots of shapes, etc.). I can imagine a world with 100% 3D printed on demand LEGOs. Maybe LEGO should sell a 3D printer that only prints their designs. Hmmmm, wait a sec, hold my PowerPoint….
Read more here: