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HIVE EXCLUSIVE SURVEY: Not Much Has Changed for Retailers in the Last Year

20 Jul, 2001 By: Jessica Wolf

Retailers aren’t suffering because of distributor shakeouts during the last year, according to a Video Store Magazine-sponsored survey of 200 mostly independents.

In results from the phone survey conducted last month by an independent research firm, 71% of respondents said they feel distributor customer service is about the same as a year ago. On a scaleof one to 10, with 10 the highest score, 74% ranked their distributor’s customer service as an eight or higher.

Only 34% said they feel buying product is more difficult than a year ago. Twenty-two percent said it’s easier and 45% felt thingsare about the same.

Retailers who answered “yes” to combining orders with other retailers also revealed they are doing it more often. Though 86% of respondents said they do not practice sideways selling, of those who do, 50% said they are combining orders more often.

The No. 1 reason retailers gave for sideways selling was to get better prices. Close behind was the fact that combining orders allows them to meet studio goals. Respondents also commented that sideways sellingallows for better availability and variety of titles and provides discounts on combinations.

The distributor most respondents use is Ingram at 41%, second is VPD Inc. with 25%. One-fourth of the retailers surveyed said their distributor has changed in the last year.

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