April 25, 2013 - Modern Distribution Management

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April 25, 2013

Download this Issue in PDF: April 25, 2013

This is the PDF of this issue of Modern Distribution Management.

Table of Contents:

  • MDM-Baird Survey: Inconsistent First Quarter for Distributors
  • Commentary: Beware the Amazon Mystique
  • Yes, Customers Want to Hear from You
  • MDM Pricing Trends Report: First Quarter 2013
  • MDM Industrial Inflation Index: February 2013

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MDM Pricing Trends Report: First Quarter 2013

This report was formerly called the Inflation by Commodity Group Report.

This report is researched and produced by MDM editors. View the Fourth Quarter 2012 and Annual pricing trends report here.

These product groups provide a snapshot of inflation trends based on the Producer Price Index from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. First quarter 2012 pricing levels are compared with first quarter 2013, and fourth quarter 2012 with first quarter 2013.

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  • Abrasives
  • Adhesives & Sealants
  • Metal Cutting Machine Tools
  • Metal Forming Machine Tools
  • Pumps, Compressors, & Eqmt
  • Ind. Material Handling Eqmt
  • Rubber & Plastic Hose
  • Rubber & Plastic Belts & Belting
  • Ind. Rubber Products, nec
  • Metal Valves (not fluid power)
  • Personal Safety Equipment & Clothing
  • Steel Mill Products


  • Softwood Lumber
  • Hardwood Lumber
  • General Millwork
  • Gypsum Products
  • Hardboard, Particlebd, Fiberbd
  • Plywood
  • Plastic Construction Products
  • Wood Ties, Siding, Shingles,
  • Shakes


  • Electrical Machinery & Eqmt
  • Electronic Components & Accs
  • Integrating and Measuring Instruments
  • Motors & Generators
  • Wiring Devices
  • Transformers & Power Regulators
  • Switchgear, Switchboard, etc., Eqmt
  • Communications & Related Eqmt
  • Electric Lamp Bulbs & Parts

Other Related Electrical

  • Lighting Fixtures
  • Nonferrous Wire & Cable
  • Fabricated Ferrous Wire & Cable

Power Transmission/Bearing

  • Mechanical Power Transmission Eqmt
  • Ball & Roller Bearings
  • Plain Bearings & Bushings
  • Speed Changers, Drives & Gears

Fluid Power

  • Fluid Power Eqmt
  • Fluid Power Valves
  • Fluid Power Hose/ Tube Fittings
  • Fluid Power Pumps & Parts
  • Fluid Power Actuators/ Accum/ Cylinders


  • Plastic Resins & Materials
  • Plastic Products (Overall)


  • Nuts, Bolts, Screws, Rivets, Washers (overall)
  • Aircraft Fasteners
  • Externally Threaded Fasteners
  • Internally Threaded Fasteners
  • Nonthreaded Metal Fasteners


  • Hardware (overall)
  • Builders’ Hardware


  • Hand & Edge Tools
  • Power-Driven Hand Tools
  • Tools, Dies, Jigs, Molds, Fixtures
  • Cutting Tools & Accs (overall)
  • Precision Measuring Tools
  • Small Cutting Tools


  • Industrial Gases
  • Welding Machinery/ Equipment


  • Pulp, Paper & Allied Products (overall)
  • Sanitary Paper Products
  • Boxes
  • Packaging Products from Plastic


  • Air Cond. & Refrigeration Eqmt
  • Heating Eqmt
  • Plumbing Fixtures & Fittings

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Yes, Customers Want to Hear from You

Distributors often fear that they will annoy their customers with too many marketing messages. But if those marketing messages are relevant, customers actually welcome them. This article examines customer preferences for marketing communications and how distributors can capitalize on what customers want.

We sometimes let our personal preferences influence our business beliefs. One area where we’ve found this to be most prevalent is with customer communications. We assume customers will think our marketing emails are “spam,” and they certainly wouldn’t want to receive another phone call during their busy day. But the reality is that customers do want to hear from you.

Over several years and dozens of surveys, we have asked distributors’ customers to rate types of communications and the frequency they wanted to hear from their distributors. In every case, &hellip

Yes, Customers Want to Hear from You Read More »

Commentary: Beware the Amazon Mystique

Every marketer in industrial and commercial markets should pay close attention to what Amazon is doing. But don’t let them drive your strategy. Don’t give them the keys to your strategy; don’t even let them near your strategy. They have the resources to do well enough on their own without your help. And yet, that is exactly what is happening on a widespread basis today.

If you sell through an Amazon Webstore platform, as many distributors do, you are providing …

Commentary: Beware the Amazon Mystique Read More »

MDM-Baird Survey: ‘Inconsistent’ First Quarter for Distributors

Robert W. Baird & Co., in partnership with Modern Distribution Management, conducted a survey of more than 500 distributors and manufacturers to gauge business trends and the outlook for the distribution industry in diverse sectors. Here is a summary of first-quarter results and distributor and manufacturer expectations for 2013.

Inconsistency was the name of the game in the first quarter, as respondents to the first-quarter 2013 MDM/Baird Distribution Survey reported uneven sales from month to month. First-quarter revenues, on average, were up 1.9 percent overall for respondents, lower than the 3.4 percent growth forecast in the fourth-quarter survey. Most segments represented in the survey reported growth in the quarter, albeit at varied rates across sectors.

Respondents expect revenues to grow …

MDM-Baird Survey: ‘Inconsistent’ First Quarter for Distributors Read More »

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