NAMM Announces 2003 Dealer Technology Survey Results

September 19, 2003

More than 58 percent of music products dealers currently place their purchase orders by phone, according to the 2003 Dealer Technology Survey conducted by NAMM, the International Music Products Association. Although this popular method has been in use for years, it is one that often leads to errors.

The responses further revealed that 32 percent of these dealers fax purchase orders, 5 percent of orders are taken by sales reps, 3 percent are e-mailed, 1 percent are placed through vendor Web sites and 1 percent are placed through electronic data interchange (EDI). These findings are key to the industry and its future because the inaccuracy and inefficiency of phoning and faxing can be eliminated using electronic business-to-business interchange (e-B2B), a method that the music products industry has defined, and one in which many respondents are in the process of implementing.

NAMM mailed the 25-question survey to more than 3,000 NAMM domestic retail Members to determine the state of technology within the industry and how to improve supply chain efficiencies. Based on the number mailed, NAMM received a 12 percent response rate. Members could also answer the questions online from June 16 through August 8.

The survey also revealed that 51 percent of the respondents have high-speed Internet access, 42 percent have dial-up and only 4 percent have no Internet connection (3 percent didn’t answer). Knowing that 93 percent have some type of Internet connection establishes the fact that the majority will be able to take advantage of new eXtensible Markup Language (XML) e-B2B tools being developed.

“The overall objective of this survey was to learn about our retail Members experiences with technology so that we can better serve them,” said Robert Bates, industry technology manager, NAMM. “A major key to getting our small- and medium-size dealers up and running with the new industry XML e-B2B and its benefits will be making their point-of-sale providers aware that our dealers are interested in improving their efficiency through technology.” Bates continued, “The data gathered also helped to clearly identify some critical weak spots in our industry supply chain that we can now focus on strengthening it with value and better efficiency.”

Members who returned the survey were entered in a drawing for prizes. The winners were Woody’s Music in Warrenton, Mo., who won a trip for two to the 2004 NAMM Show, including airfare and lodging at the Anaheim Marriott Hotel; Jacobs Music in Philadelphia, Pa., who won a Palm Zire color PDA/camera; Bounty Music in Maui, Hawaii, who won a 2004 NAMM Membership renewal; and Music Emporium in Logan, Utah, who won six months of unlimited access to NAMM University online courses at

NAMM last conducted a technology survey in 1999.