Many home improvement companies have been slow come up with 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 has been evolving though, mainly due to quantum leaps in technology, composite door manufacturing to be 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 having a choice of a new family saloon or an innovative new Rolls Royce for upon the 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 an apartment improvement company in Devon that has for decades been retailing UPVC doors and windows. They were interested in selling composite doors just as the demand for them amongst local residents was growing quickly.
The principal reason for this was numerous that the big boys in the homeimprovements 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 an amalgamated doors range and away from UPVC, which is what all of the competition were offering. Getting in the fast growing composite doors market seemed a good move but you won’t of outfitting a showroom was prohibitive. So the first thing we did would be to get onto Google, find out who the players were in composite door manufacturing and supply and then put them to the push.
Obviously price and credit facilities were major factors, as was order to delivery turnaround, returns policy and product quality. There appeared to be little difference between the door manufacturers here as each one of those approached had many years experience in the home improvements market and recognised the need for credit facilities, keen prices and fast turnaround. Not to cover that with improvement British Standards into the composite manufacturing industry, the manufacturing processes were extremely close.
Where some companies fell down though was when we asked them what they were going to achieve to help us to sell items. The lack of advertising support, knowledge and training was truly shameful, indicative with the slow decline in Britain’s manufacturing base (Short term thinking ,worrying about immediate costs versus lengthy investment for market share 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 would be to see which door manufacturers would help us to stock a showroom with sample products, provide reason for sales materials and help us to get the word out locally about the superiority of composite doors over UPVC doors. Our reasoning was that always be cost several thousand pounds to outfit a new showroom and get initial customers, when we were going to be ordering from gonna do it . suppliers for years, so why whenever 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 by simply proving samples free of 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 many to end up being the market leader in the near future had obviously done their homework and provide cutting-edge technology such a great own-brand website which retailers can use for in-home demonstrations as well as marketing and advertising tool. This blog has a design feature that allows potential purchasers to select the style, colour and furnishings for their ideal door and the website shows the finished design and price instantly, even including an online ordering gym.
Nick’s Building Supply
11100 Broadway, Crown Point, IN 46307, USA