Wholesalers Struggle to Adapt to New Consumer Demand Patterns

By Edwin Lopez

Dive Brief:

  • Wholesalers are struggling to adapt to new consumer demand patterns, as traditional forecasting processes consistently lead to overstocks and higher costs, according to a new survey by Blue Ridge Global .
  • Only 5.2% of the 100 respondents said they used advanced tools such as machine learning or AI for inventory management, while more than 70% use historical sales data or moving averages to forecast. About 65% of respondents later said their processes did not fully provide the "insights" needed to succeed.
  • Most respondents said complex demand patterns (37.4%) and volatility (30.6%) would be the biggest challenges facing wholesalers in the next three years. To address this, the survey found, wholesalers were often holding more goods (64.6% hold more than 30 days of inventory) and suffering the higher costs.