Distributors expand online

April 16, 2012
Digi-Key, TTI, others launch programs designed to speed procurement and provide better access to services.

Electronics distributors announced a slate of new online enhancements recently—all aimed at speeding the procurement process and offering customers greater access to information and services.

Digi-Key makes news with its new dynamic catalog, offering part-stocking and pricing information in real time. The catalog is available on the distributor’s U.S. web site and allows customers to personalize the way they browse the distributor’s more than 2 million electronic components. Customers can search for products by supplier, by broad or specific product categories, and by product series.

“The Dynamic Catalog is the culmination of Digi-Key’s transition to becoming a totally integrated, Internet-based, global distributor,” Digi-Key’s chief marketing officer Tony Harris.

At TTI, Inc., company leaders announced earlier this month the launch of its ezReel buying option. The new online interface lets customers purchase parts in cut tape—or less than standard reel quantities—and have them placed on 7-inch mini reels with leader and trailer tape attached. The service also includes a price calculator that helps customers identify products eligible for the ezReel program.

“The goal is to make the online buying experience as easy as possible and to extend the availability of TTI’s broad and deep inventory to customers of all sizes,” Kevin Schubert, vice president of global Internet business, said in a statement announcing the new service. “Allowing for customizable tape and reel lot-sizes opens up opportunities for both TTI and our customers.”

Newark element14 announced the rollout of search improvements to its online store. Web site upgrades include search engine performance upgrades, relevancy rankings with best product matches shown first, visibility of up to 20 product attributes applicable to the user’s search, “share this page” functionality on all product pages, and more. The end result is a much faster and easier user experience, according to Newark element14 leaders.

In still other online news, the Electronic Components Industry Association (ECIA) launched its own YouTube channel to highlight member benefits, association activities and industry news. ECIA launched the program with two videos promoting the value of ECIA membership. The new channel is available at

And finally, Allied Electronics is leveraging its social media initiatives to shed light on a charitable cause. This spring the distributor ran a Facebook campaign to rally its “fans” and raise money for the American Cancer Society. For every like, comment, share or new fan, Allied donated $1 (up to $2,500) to the Society. The program drew the attention of Allied’s 13,500 Facebook fans and was shared with more than 150,000 Facebook users.

New & Expanded Distribution Agreements

Arrow Electronics announced new distribution agreements with Ocular LCD and ILS Technology. Arrow will distribute Ocular’s projected capacitive touch panel products in North America, and will offer ILS’ deviceWISE M2M application platform and deployment kit to customers in the Americas.

Avnet announced that its Avnet Memec business, a division of Avnet Electronics Marketing, expanded its agreement in Europe, the Middle East and Africa with HALO Electronics; the distributor will now offer HALO’s communication magnetics to customers in the Americas.

As part of its new agreement with EnOcean, Future Electronics announced the launch of an energy harvesting starter kit—the ESK 300c—available to customers in North America.

Mouser Electronics announced a new agreement to stock Seoul Semiconductor’s Acrich2 LED engines, for use in AC powered lighting applications.

Don’t miss these upcoming industry events:

EDS 2012
May 7-10, 2012
Las Vegas

Avnet Smart Energy Forum
May 16, 2012
Online Event

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