July 2014 by Jim Hill
There are two distribution channels for most manufactured products. One is directly from the manufacturer. The other is from the manufacturer, through a distributor, and finally, through a retailer, before reaching the consumer.
Distributors and stocking representatives are simply middlemen who buy directly from manufacturers. They must increase the price to cover their expenses and obtain a desired profit. They then sell to retailers. The retail store again adds his expenses and profit to arrive at the price the retail stores charges the consumer for the item.
In the pre-internet times the middleman assumed the marketing function for the manufacturer. This marketing and sales function being handled by the assorted middlemen allowed the manufacturer to concentrate on engineering and production issues while avoiding the expense of maintaining marketing and sales staffs. But today, the internet has dramatically reduced the costs of marketing and sales to the point where many manufacturers are reconsidering their sales strategies. Every year more manufacturers offer their products to the public through websites, which not only reduces marketing and sales expenses, but also passes significant savings to the consumer.
Before the internet, the only choice a home-owner had to buy cabinet doors was from a retailer like Home Depot, Lowes, or Menards. These big-box stores didn’t actually make the doors they sell, they contracted with manufacturers and middlemen to supply the doors for them.
Also before the internet came into existence, the home-owner or small remodeler would be unlikely to even find a cabinet door manufacturer, so the possibility of buying direct from the manufacturer just didn’t exist.
The internet has broken through that barrier for remodelers, home-owners, and do-it-yourselfers, allowing small users the opportunity to buy direct. A quick Google search for “cabinet doors” returns several sources. The top returns are the big-box stores, Ikea, and Ebay, and other large retail outlets, but following those listings you will start to see some actual manufacturers. While several of the manufacturers sell only to the cabinet trade, some others will sell to the public.
CabinetDoors.Com, a division of The Door Stop is one of those manufacturers that make custom cabinet doors available to everyone.
The Door Stop was the first cabinet door manufacturer to offer cabinet doors and drawer fronts factory-direct on the internet (that’s why our internet division is was able to register the domain name www.cabinetdoors.com).
Our manufacturing efficiency and cost structure has not gone unnoticed by other internet entrepreneurs. Many internet websites offering cabinet doors are actually purchasing our products and simply re-selling them on their websites…with an additional markup as their profit.
The internet is still evolving but it’s impact as of today is clear. Customers now have access to manufactured goods without the requirement of buying those goods from the end-of-the-chain retail store. Like many manufacturers, The Door Stop is offering our products directly to the consumer.
Our internet division, www.cabinetdoors.com, offers far more choices than any retail store can carry and at prices they just cannot march.