Many home improvement companies have been slow to make any change in suppliers as the industry has slowed during the recent recession. Afraid to rock the boat, retailers side 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 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 point out that when faced by using a choice of a new family saloon or a meaningful Rolls Royce for upon the same price, the choice, for many, is beckoning!
Anyway, I’m well known locally for my marketing experience, in particular assisting new business start-ups when compared to was delighted to answer the call for a house improvement company in Devon that has for several years been retailing UPVC doors and windows. They were interested in selling composite doors as the demand for them amongst local residents was growing quickly.
The principal explanation for this was males that the professionals in the homeimprovements industry, the market leaders in fact, had began selling composite doors recently and had positioned these products in the top of their price range, reflecting the superiority of composite over UPVC doors.
The first problem was the cost of 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. Moving into the fast growing composite doors market seemed a good move but kitchens . 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 analyze.
Obviously price and credit facilities were major factors, as was order to delivery turnaround, returns policy and product quality. There perceived to be little difference between the door manufacturers here as all of those approached had many years experience within the home improvements market and recognised the need for credit facilities, keen prices and fast turnaround. Not to note that with the introduction of British Standards into the composite manufacturing industry, the manufacturing processes were extremely close.
Where some companies fell down though was when we asked them the were going to achieve to help us to sell their products. The lack of promoting support, knowledge and training was truly shameful, indicative in the slow decline in Britain’s manufacturing base (Short term thinking ,worrying about immediate costs versus long-run investment for business 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 concentrate on 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 allow 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 might cost several thousand pounds to outfit a new showroom and get initial customers, when we had been going to be ordering from the same suppliers for years, so why if and when they not share within start-up cost?
There were six 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 others 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 one’s destiny had obviously done their homework as well as supply cutting-edge technology such the own-brand website which retailers can use for in-home demonstrations too as a marketing tool. This website has a design feature that allows potential purchasers to find the style, colour and furnishings for their ideal door and the internet site shows the finished design and price instantly, even including world wide web ordering unit.
Nick’s Building Supply
11100 Broadway, Crown Point, IN 46307, USA