For reaching the global market but securing the knowledge of the local market there is only one option for machine vision manufacturers to achieve this – using distributors.
Distributors are a vital cog in the entire system. They are not just a ‘shop window’ for products, they deliver much more than that.
They bring product expertise, open up new markets and deliver customer service benefits to their local market – which can be beyond the reach of machine vision manufacturer.
As Gardasoft’s Jools Hudson says: ‘a good machine vision distributor is more than just a box shifter’.
She adds: “A good machine vision distributor will add enormous value to both the end user and the equipment supplier.
“The value of the distributor to the engineer in the field is clear: the distributor will ensure that they choose the most suitable components for their application.
The machine vision distributor network allows equipment manufacturers to concentrate on their primary skill while the distributors provide the specialist support. The distributor will take care of smaller customers and standard applications, leaving the equipment manufacturer free to work closely with the customer on bespoke and larger projects, often in collaboration with a distributor.”
For Belgium-based Euresys and Photoneo, who are located in Slovakia, one of the major benefits of working with distribution partners it is the ability to reach new markets and avoid the costs involved with setting up a new office and hiring staff. Working with distributors has also been part of their success.
Both companies work with more than 40 distributors. Photoneo acknowledges it provides instant lead generation, while Euresys feel the benefit, particularly with its partners in Asia.
“They act as advisors, helping customers test, evaluate and integrate our products,” said Euresys CEO Marc Damhaut.
“Working with distributors has been a key ingredient to Euresys’ growth for the past 25 years.”
The defined geographical location is also important to Ximea, along with a comprehensive knowledge of the product and its benefits. This is crucial for any distributor working with Ximea.
Henning von der Forst said: “Distributors are ‘individually specialised on different technologies and applications’, therefore our distributors need to be experienced and knowledgeable in their specific area.
“Our distributors should be able to spend a certain amount of time investing in information sharing and demos. We trust distributors who can provide customers with a high level of service.”
*MVPro is going to examine the importance of the distributors’ role in greater detail. This will include an analysis of their online presence and services, plus additional insight via a consumer survey.
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