0 20 40 60 80 100
Into which markets do you sell?
Manufacturing and processing is still
the top market for our respondents to sell
into (Figure 2), with 85 percent saying they
reach this customer pool (compared to 88
percent last year). Construction came in
second highest, with 64 percent report-
ing selling into this market. This segment
was followed closely by OEMs, Machine
Shops, and the Energy market. Govern-
ment, which 55 percent say they reach, has
bounced back slightly from 2013, but is not
nearly as high as the 61 percent who cited
this market in 2012. It’s possible suppliers
are still suffering based on last year’s se-
quester cuts and government shutdown.
On the low end was the Hospitality indus-
try, as well as Aerospace and Institutional
customers. Automotive still hasn’t quite
recovered from pre-recession levels. In
2005, our survey showed 55 percent with
May/June 2014 / INDUSTRIAL DISTRIBUTION 23
sales relationships in this sector, compared
to 48 percent today. In all, the results of
this question mostly fall in line with what
our survey respondents reported last year.
Write-ins in this category yielded several
trends, including respondents who say they
sell to agriculture, marine environments, or
wholesale to other re-sellers.
Additional details about this year’s survey respondents include the following:
• The most common annual revenue brackets were at the low and high end of the
scale — with 28 percent representing companies under $10 million, and 24 percent
companies over $500 million.
• The biggest segment of our respondent
pool hails from the Midwest — with 36
percent identifying with this area of the
country. The second largest chunk represent companies from the Northeast ( 24
percent). Interestingly, the lowest reported
headquarters location is no longer “
outside of the U.S.” This distinction goes to
the Southwest, where merely 4. 6 percent
are located. This year’s foreign-owned
are represented by 6. 7 percent of survey
• The number of family-owned businesses
has shown a bumpy – though steady – decline over the past few years. For example:
in 2006, 78 percent of survey respondents
said they were family-owned. Today’s number is just below 60 percent.