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How important is technology's role in market logistics?

Why is logistical efficiency important in marketing? How important is technology's role in market logistics? What are some examples of technology improving market logistics?

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According to SME Times (2008) although quite an old concept, the term 'logistics' started to be widely used in the business world since the early 1990s when globalization, coupled with liberalization, triggered intense business competition and forced both private and public firms to commit themselves to meet the challenges of the market; in an increasingly globalized supply chain, it became necessary for businesses to avail their customers 'the right item in the right quantity at the right time at the right place at the lowest cost'. According to this site, managing supply of goods from supplier to buyer is an important aspect of marketing; in export business, the importance of efficient logistic management is considered much more due to the complexities involved in it; an exporter secures an overseas order after a great deal of effort and his achievement depends largely on the timely and successful execution of the same in terms of a timely delivery; logistics or 'physical distributiion' refers to the art of managing the flow of products or material from producer or supplier to the customer or user and is thus concerned with creation of time and place utility.

According to SME Times (2008) in terms of logistics and marketing strategy, marketing strategy formulation is related to various elements of the marketing mix, consisting of two main types -- production element and distribution element; while the production element (comprising of four elements: product, price, place and promotion) aims at creating 'form utility' by taking such marketing decisions such as product line variety, design, style, colour, brand, after sales service, etc.; the distribution element is concerned with distribution channel fixation and making arrangements for physical movement of the goods and services to create 'time and place utility'. According to this site, physical distribution or logistic management encompasses the tasks involved in planning, implementing and controlling the physical flows of materials and finished goods from points of origin to points of use to meet the needs of customers at a profit.

According to SME Times (2008) logistics management involves different elements related to the planning, implementation and controlling of goods, services and information between the point of origin and the point of consumption; these elements can broadly be categorized as logistical strategy, logistical decisions and logistical planning; logistical strategy formulation refers to evaluation of cost effective methodology of distributing goods to market (while achieving service level objectives) while logistical planning involves logistical tool development to meet the challenges of market. According to this site, logistical decisions remains at the core of strategy and they involve complex and data intensive decisions such as 'Where and how many distribution centers should be there'?, 'What should be the transportation equipment'?, 'What material handling technology should be used?', ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses the main objective of logistics, supply chaining, the requirements needed to bring product and consumer together, and marketing logistics elements such as raw material acquisition, inventory management, warehousing, packaging and utilization, transportation, insurance, and communication and control. This solution is 1780 words with references and in-text citations.