How Does a Distribution Company Work

A distribution company plays a crucial role in the supply chain process by ensuring that products reach the end consumer efficiently. This article will provide an overview of how a distribution company operates, including the various steps involved in this process.

1. Procurement: A distribution company sources products from manufacturers or suppliers based on market demands and customer requirements.

2. Storage: Once the products are procured, they are stored in warehouses or distribution centers. These facilities are strategically located to ensure easy access and timely delivery.

3. Inventory Management: The distribution company maintains accurate records of the inventory, tracking the quantities of each product in storage. This helps in meeting customer demands promptly and avoiding stock-outs.

4. Order Processing: When a customer places an order, the distribution company receives the order details, verifies the availability of the requested products, and processes the order accordingly.

5. Pick and Pack: The distribution company picks the ordered products from the inventory and packs them securely, ensuring proper labeling and packaging to avoid any damage during transit.

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6. Shipping: Once the order is packed, the distribution company arranges for shipping through various transportation modes, such as trucks, ships, or planes, depending on the destination and urgency.

7. Distribution: The products are delivered to the customers’ specified locations, whether it be retail stores, businesses, or directly to consumers’ homes. The distribution company ensures timely delivery while maintaining the quality and integrity of the products.


1. How long does it take for a distribution company to deliver a product?
Delivery times vary depending on the distance and the transportation mode used. Typically, it can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks.

2. How are products stored in distribution centers?
Products are stored on racks, shelves, or pallets, utilizing various storage techniques to optimize space and ensure easy access.

3. Can a distribution company handle international shipping?
Yes, many distribution companies have extensive experience in international logistics and can handle shipping to various countries worldwide.

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4. What happens if a product is damaged during transit?
Distribution companies often have insurance policies in place to cover such instances. The damaged product can be replaced or refunded, depending on the circumstances.

5. How are customer orders tracked?
Distribution companies use specialized software that allows customers to track their orders in real-time, providing transparency and peace of mind.

6. Can a distribution company handle large volumes of products?
Yes, distribution companies are equipped to handle large volumes of products, with extensive warehouse facilities and efficient logistics systems.

7. Can a distribution company handle e-commerce fulfillment?
Yes, many distribution companies specialize in e-commerce fulfillment, providing services such as inventory management, order processing, and shipping for online retailers.