Mindful of the factors affecting distribution decisions (i.e., marketing decision issues and relationship issues), the marketer has several options to choose from when settling on a design for their distribution network. We stress the word “may” since while in theory an option would appear to be available, marketing decision factors (e.g., product, promotion, pricing, target markets) or the nature of distribution channel relationships may not permit the marketer to pursue a particular option. For example, selling through a desired retailer may not be feasible if the retailer refuses to handle a product.
For marketers the choice of distribution design comes down to the following options:
- Direct Distribution Systems
- Indirect Distribution Systems
- Multi-Channel or Hybrid Distribution Systems