Global Fastener News

1998 FIN – Electronic Commerce is Catching On

December 14
00:00 2010

March 4, 1998 FIN – A majority of fastener firms participating in the End of 1997 FIN Survey report they are already using electronic commerce, and by the end of 1998 three-quarters of the companies may be using come form of conducting transactions by computer.

That is good news to Richard Payne of Safety Socket Screw Corporation. As associate chairman of the National Fastener Distributors Association, Payne has been encouraging the industry to advance.
Both distributors and manufacturers will gain as the fastener industry moves into electronic commerce, Payne believes.

Payne, who exchanges about a dozen E-mail messages daily, said Safety Socket is already accepting orders from distributors online through Kanebridge Corporation. He is looking forward to advancing as soon as EDICA standards are established for fasteners.

If distributors’ computers are reporting to manufacturers’ computers what items have been sold every day instead of waiting for the stock order to come in at the end of the month, manufacturers can make production adjustments quickly.

“If your computer is talking to my computer everyone knows what’s happening a lot earlier,” Payne explained. Distributors can have their inventory replenished faster, Payne noted.

Payne said the NFDA is working to advance electronic commerce through establishing bar coding guidelines for package goods in addition to current standards for larger shipments. The Information Technology Committee will recommend the association board adopt bar code guidelines, Payne said.

The NFDA also recently established a web page ( and is developing electronic commerce programs for vendor managed-inventory, Payne added.

Fasteners On-Line

Electronic commerce already handles an average of 21.6% of fastener business, according to the FIN Survey. One firm reported 95% of its business is conducted by electronic commerce.

Payne noted that the FIN Survey question didn’t specify exactly what it meant by electronic commerce. Some survey participants may define electronic commerce as just using bar coding or having a web page on the Internet rather than doing business by EDI.

“Despite this relatively high affinity for electronic commerce, E-mail is relatively unpopular – only 31% say they use it frequently,” Tony Casilio of AWP Research observed.

E-Mail may take off this year, as another 27% say they plan to start in 1998.

Manufacturers are ahead of distributors in use of electronic commerce. A total of 62.3% of manufacturers and 54.2% of distributors report they are already using electronic commerce.

That gap may narrow by the end of 1998, as 23.6% of distributors plan to start using electronic commerce this year and 19.7% of manufacturers plan to advance that way.

Only 22.2% of distributors and 18% of manufacturers have no plans for using electronic commerce.

By the end of 1998 a majority of both manufacturers and distributors intend to use E-mail for business. A total of 30.6% of distributors and 29.5% of manufacturers are already using E-mail. The percent of manufacturers using E-mail should double this year as another 29.5% and 27.8% of distributors responded to start sending and receiving messages.

Statistically identical numbers of manufacturers (41%) and distributors (41.7%) say they rarely or never use E-mail. ©1998/2010 Fastener Industry News


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