One of the key issues associated with electronic component distribution companies is that of the level of support that can be provided.
With manufacturers now focussing on the development and manufacture of product, the role of technical support is increasingly falling to the electronic component distributors.
Forms of technical support
The technical support provided by component distributors can take many forms. These may be suitable for some applications and not others. It is therefore wise to check that the distributor can supply the level of technical support that is required before engaging them. The technical support can often be as valuable as low prices on the components.
The technical support can be provided in several ways:
- Technical library: Often electronic component distributors will have a technical library on their website. Using this it is possible to choose and select the required component and also gain the full details of the product from the data sheets. These technical libraries are often open on the website and access can be gained regardless of whether components are being bought from them. Also these details will be available on the manufacturer website.
- Technical sales representatives: Often the sale representatives will have a good knowledge of the products. They will be able to provide a good overview of the product range and also help make a selection. However these sales representatives are most likely to gain a commission on the sales they make. This could influence their decisions, although most are trustworthy.
- Trained product support specialists: Many electronic component distributors employ technical support engineers. These staff are often trained by the manufacturers and they are able to provide in-depth technical support. These people are particularly valuable if problems are discovered with the design.
When choosing a distributor to use for a given project, then it is necessary to look at all aspects, including delivery times, prices, stock range, and also the support they can also give.
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