Lovejoy has long been an active member of the Power Transmission Distributors Association, and been a loyal supporter of the mechanical power transmission distribution channel going back to its earliest days (several generations ago). Since this time, Lovejoy has expanded its product line, and joined the Fluid Power Distributors Association and our German operation has joined the European Power Transmission Distributors Association.
Taking it one step further, Lovejoy had designed its website largely to be a funnel for its trusted distribution partners. While the website is rich with content data, and it is Lovejoy's hope that users find any and all content they need... Lovejoy also puts prominent "Find a Distributor" buttons on nearly every page of its website as well. The goal is for end users to find the information they seek, and then be immediately able to find a distributor in their area that can help them.
So... the question remains, why does Lovejoy value its partnerships with local distributors so much?
While I could go on for a while, the short/distilled answer is customer awareness and engagement. Distributors have a wide selection of products and solutions that far exceed Lovejoy's high quality of solutions, and they also have the opportunity to readily and completely go out and see/understand an end users complete application.
At the end of the day, Lovejoy understands that its end users really aren't buying simply a component... but rather system up-time and reliability. As such, having strong distribution partners in the field who can eat, breath, and literally live to serve a given end user... and who completely understand the challenges and history of a given end users applications... are invaluable to Lovejoy, and we are honored to be partnered with them.
The internet may be making information gathering much more accessible to end users, which is great (and Lovejoy's website continues to see increased traffic)... but the internet cannot replace the value of a well-rounded and seasoned brick and mortar distributor who can go out and really become an integral part of an end user's team.
To elaborate on this point, given the internet age and end users increasing ending up on manufacturer websites, I believe it is critical (for both distributors and their manufacturing partners) that value adding distributors ensure they are well represented on their trusted manufacturing partners' websites.
More than ever a manufacturer's website is becoming their brand, and, given how important distributors are for maximizing value to our end users, we believe it is critical that we highlight and go to great lengths to encouraging end users visiting our website to reach out to our highly valued and trusted distributor partners. (For more on the topic of manufacturer websites, I wrote an article that was recently published in Industrial Distribution magazine that may be of interest to you.)
Going back to the question, to end with an example, if you are a steel mill... Lovejoy certainly has plenty of experience selling a variety of couplings into your market... but we do not have experience selling bearings, chain, and many other products that a distributor partner will have. Similarly, we have not lived in your specific facility the way your one or two preferred distributor partners have. This same logic applied to almost any and every industry Lovejoy serves... be it paper mills, or power generation, or logging...
To find a Lovejoy authorized distributor located just miles from you who is ready to become a lifelong partner to you and your organization, please check out the Lovejoy "Find a Distributor" tool.