Explain the role of channel intermediaries in the product distribution process. Why is their role important?

Expert Answers
farouk23 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Channel intermediaries act as a link between the product manufacturer and the product customer ( buyer). They can take on a number of functions which include but are not limited to selling, packaging, distributing and marketing. The roles of the channel intermediary include: 

  1. Providing information to the consumer 
  2. Payment collection 
  3. Financing 
  4. Risk taking ( Intermediaries may take title to goods therefore removing risk from the producer) 
  5. Point of contact ( they are the main point of contact for the buyer and provide all the customer service functions)
  6. Promotion ( they may conduct product marketing) 
  7. Physical distribution ( Logistics and order fulfilment)

Channel intermediaries are important because they allow the manufacturer or producer to concentrate their core efforts on product creation. They also allow the producer to reach a far larger proportion of the market than they otherwise would have been able to by organic growth alone.