A Web site where resellers are ordering roll-your-own PCs online is proving a hit for distributor Q*Soft. The reseller reaction lends weight to Q*Soft's claim it is winning the unofficial race between Australian distributors to go live with a facility for buying custom-built PCs via the Internet.
The Web site's point-and-click implementation of configuration and purchase processes saves time and money, according to Craig Rutherford of Silver Link, a reseller in the Queensland regional centre of Ayr.
"It takes me two or three minutes on the Net instead of spending a long time on STD phone calls to multiple people," Rutherford said.
"I can do my quotes at night on the Net and delivery costs are only $5 by road transport against the $50 I am charged for a box shipped from Sydney."
"It's easy to use and I can download prices straightaway," said Cliff Rix, a partner in Brisbane's AusMicro Computer Services.
"If you have to quote for somebody, you can go to Q*Soft's Web site, build a system and produce a price for them.
"For my company, this makes it a lot easier to do business."
When the "custom build" button on Q*Soft's Web site (www.qsoft.com.au) is selected, a list of three base systems appears: entry level, deluxe multimedia and corporate multimedia.
The systems are made up of 10 elements including processors, memory and hard drives, monitors and warranty periods, each of which can be optioned up to 13 different ways via drop-down menus.
The site works out the total value of the order as the system is built, so that choosing a larger hard drive, for example, is immediately reflected in the price. A submit button sends the order which is delivered by road transport anywhere in Australia or can be air expressed for a premium charge.
Q*Soft has outsourced the physical build to a Queensland PC assembler that managing director Barry Amor declined to name.
"Over 50 per cent of PCs sold are still in this category of not-recognised brand names so it is an enormous part of the market," Amor said.
Q*Soft's online custom-build service "appeals to dealers addressing the small-to- medium part of the market who aren't in a position to buy white box components competitively and put them together efficiently".
The new service is the latest update of Q*Soft's redesigned Web pages.