Ingram Micro chairman and chief executive Jerre Stead has issued a challenge to distributors to come clean about their ecommerce capabilities.
As the distributor prepared to launch the latest upgrade to its website for resellers in the US, Stead said: "Don't ask the competition to talk about the dollar sales they have going through their websites, persuade them to talk about the number of transactions they have completed online."
Stead claimed Ingram's website had experienced a 50 per cent increase in online transactions over the past year, and that the average sale per head for each Ingram salesperson had increased by 40 per cent over the past two years as a result of the distributor's website.
He added: "Many activities that were performed by our telesales staff are now taking place over the website, freeing up staff to concentrate on value-add sales. A lot of productivity gains at Ingram Micro are due to the internet."
But Stead declined to give details on how many sales were conducted through Ingram Micro's website and refused to state what proportion of sales the distributor was now fulfilling on line.
A spokesman for Ingram Micro UK said within three months, the distributor's 14 European operations will have websites in line with the US in terms of functionality. "This will represent a significant improvement in terms of their capabilities," he added.
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