As precision farming dealers, when considering adding a new precision product/service to your offerings, what do you look for from the manufacturers you are considering?
Please add your own thoughts in the "Comments" section below.
“We are a multi-branded dealership and therefore have ties to 4 precision manufacturers. Case AFS products come through our Case IH contract as well as Trimble products through Case IH Parts and Service as well as our Trimble contract at our Dayton, Va. store. Through AGCO, we are tied to their precision partner, Topcon. The fourth line of precision we carry is Raven, which goes hand-in-hand with our applicators division.
“With 4 lines to sell/support/keep current on, [our current staff has their hands full], and that is probably the most limiting factor to adding other lines. We won’t gain anything by adding any lines other than headaches.
“Since we already have a good spread of suppliers, we will be more likely to broaden the depth of our offerings in those 4 areas. Correction source offerings and services is an area that we, like many dealerships, are looking into. Not all of our customers need/want to be on WAAS. Some are in need of mid-range corrections for their operations, some are in need of RTK’s sub-inch accuracy.
“When looking for a product line to offer to customers we look at a few key things: What are their OEM affiliations, support to the dealers and to the end user, price competitiveness, user friendliness and others as well. If a precision manufacturer won’t support what they put out through dealers or make it easy for dealers to research and price components, it makes it less lucrative to sell. The quoting process goes a lot smoother when the manufacturer has their price books well laid out and easy to understand.”
— David Shaw,
Binkley & Hurst LP,
“When we get into a position to consider curtailing or increasing our product line, we immediately first look to the solutions we like taking to the marketplace. We ask ourselves ‘Is it a fit?’
“It is very easy to sway away from your ‘solution focus’ with different ‘gadgets’ if you don't have adequate resources to support it. Not only do we look at a ‘solution focus’ perspective, but we also seriously evaluate if that product/service will compliment our existing offerings. We need to do our best to tap the full potential of whatever we are taking to the marketplace.”
— Paul Raymer,
Practical Precision Inc.,
“There are a lot of variables in this question. We usually look at price point from a marketing standpoint. Is this product on the cutting edge or is it just in the marketing game for the manufacturer that needs more engineering and development before it is ready to go to market?
“Who is the rep and how involved is he? How much knowledge can their support line give the territory specialist? What does the ordering and warranty process look like?
“We also look outside the product at co-op reimbursements since those can help with our advertising cost and getting the products in front of the right people.”
— Phil Draude,
Brokaw Supply Company,
Fort Dodge, Iowa