Distributors want their customers to purchase ice melt before the winter months and ice melt manufacturers hope distributors will heed their own advice.

Start talking with sales reps as early as July and then buy product in two phases. The first phase runs from September to October and builds up inventory. The second phase is to order additional product as needed from November through the rest of the winter, as it becomes clear how harsh the weather will actually be.

To encourage early purchasing, most manufacturers offer early-bird discounts. And if distributors get a discount, they’ll also be able to offer their early customers a price break, too.