Many home improvement companies have been slow generate any change in suppliers as the industry has slowed during the recent recession. Afraid to rock the boat, retailers doors and windows have chosen to weather the storm by trying to cut costs rather than investigate new solutions. The market is beginning to change though, mainly due to quantum leaps in technology, composite door manufacturing as being a prime example.
Composite doors are recognised as being superior to straightforward UPVC doors and improvements in the manufacturing process have meant that composite doors are now priced around the same as UPVC doors. I won’t go into much detail as to why composite doors are becoming the preferred choice of UK consumers, there are plenty of articles on that subject, some even written by yours truly. Suffice to say that when faced using a choice of a new family saloon or a new Rolls Royce for towards same price, the choice, for many, is imperative!
Anyway, I’m well known locally for my marketing experience, in particular assisting new business start-ups we was delighted to answer the call for your house improvement company in Devon that has for decades been retailing UPVC windows and doors. They were interested in selling composite doors like the demand for them amongst local residents was growing quickly.
The principal cause this was appropriate that the big boys in the upgrading industry, the market leaders in fact, had began selling composite doors recently and had positioned these products at the top of their price range, reflecting the superiority of composite over UPVC doors.
The first problem was the price switching the main focus of door retailing to a composite doors range and away from UPVC, which is what all of declared were offering. Getting into the fast growing composite doors market seemed a good move but fee of this program of outfitting a showroom was too high. So the first thing we did were get onto Google, find out who the players were in composite door manufacturing and supply and then put them to the test.
Obviously price and credit facilities were major factors, as was order to delivery turnaround, returns policy and product quality. There seemed to be little difference between the door manufacturers here as each one of those approached had many years experience with the home improvements market and recognised the need for credit facilities, keen prices and fast turnaround. Not to cover that with enhancing British Standards into the composite manufacturing industry, the manufacturing processes were extremely quite.
Where some companies fell down though was when we asked them what they were going to do to help us to sell their products. The lack of marketing support, knowledge and training was truly shameful, indicative of your slow decline in Britain’s manufacturing base (Short term thinking ,worrying about immediate costs versus long term investment for share of the market has often been the bane of British Industry).
This ‘test’ though allowed certain door manufacturers to shimmer. The ones that we chose as suppliers were easily recognisable as companies that placed heavy focus customer service and, more importantly recognised that their customer was in fact the retailer, not the end purchaser of a new door.
The simple test we put was to see which door manufacturers would assist us to stock a showroom with sample products, provide point of sales materials and help us to get the word out locally about the superiority of composite doors over UPVC doors. Our reasoning was that might cost several thousand pounds to outfit a new showroom and get initial customers, when i was going to be ordering from gonna do it . suppliers for years, so why when they not share on the inside start-up cost?
There were seven companies that were willing to help, either by proving a ‘credit’ over the cost of product samples or just before proving samples associated with charge. Two companies totally outshined the rest and my Devon-based door supplier has signed up with both of them:
Door-Stop International, tipped by a lot of to become the market leader in the long term had obviously done their homework and deliver cutting-edge technology such a great own-brand website which retailers can use for in-home demonstrations as well as a marketing tool. This website has a design feature that allows potential purchasers to simply select the style, colour and furnishings for their ideal door and the web site shows the finished design and price instantly, even including a respectable ordering center.
Nick’s Building Supply
11100 Broadway, Crown Point, IN 46307, USA