In Meredith Wilson’s classic The Music Man, River City residents line the street when the Wells Fargo wagon rolls into town. They wait for delivery of salmon from Seattle, grapefruit from Tampa, raisins from Fresno, a bathtub, a cross cut saw, and, of course, musical instruments for the town band.
Times have certainly changed, but customer demand has not. As direct-to-consumer (DTC) strategies, and the technologies utilized to implement them, have ramped up the velocity at which goods flow through the supply chain, horse-drawn wagons have given way to drones and robot delivery vehicles.
“DTC is not a new concept,” says Frank McGuigan, president and COO of Frisco, Texas-based Transplace, a non-asset-based logistics service provider. “What’s brought DTC to the forefront is the ability of e-commerce channels to provide a broader spectrum of products directly to consumers.”
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