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Lead the way

Listers’ MD Roy Frost explains why your product offering is only part of the solution.

According to the latest Business Pilot Barometer, we saw leads bounce back to the levels seen in March, following a drop in activity in April. In fact, the report says that leads are actually up 23% on the same period last year.

This is encouraging. Anyone who works strictly on a month-by-month basis (and, let’s be honest, most of us do) will now look forward to seeing those leads converting into orders in the months to come.

The same report says that, at 41.3%, the average conversion rate is 7% up in May 2023 on April 2023 – I can’t remember having seen that figure quite so high. This basically means more leads are being are being turned into quotes, which on the surface is a good thing. But to me, it implies that homeowners are requesting fewer quotes – under three – which means window companies have to work harder to be in with a chance of pitching for that work.

This is where your reputation counts for a great deal, and we have developed our marketing resources to help you communicate with your customers via social media. We also have a full suite of brochures to help you sell once you are in front of a customer – the latest of which is a new Designer Range aluminium retail brochure.

One reason why fewer companies are called in to quote could be down to the fact many homeowners are conducting much more of their research online before approaching installation companies. If they are looking at whole house refurbishments, then they will want to use a window company that offers a comprehensive range, incorporating aluminium and PVC-U windows, doors and lanterns.

And you, as a window company, will want to deal with as few suppliers as possible, to ensure there is consistency of colour and style across all ranges, and as few deliveries as possible.

We get it, and it’s something that we have always focused on.

Sheerline aluminium patio door

At the FIT Show, we unveiled our new aluminium entrance door range, which suites with the Sheerline range of aluminium windows and doors. We had three different options on show: a 44mm thermally efficient aluminium panel door, manufactured in Sheerline; a 65mm flush; and 95mm premium options.

The 95mm and 65mm flush entrance doors deliver a very high level of performance with quadruple-glazing option and finger-print entry, and are available in a wide range of colour choices and finishes.

The 44mm is fully suited with our wider offer from Sheerline, using the Sheerline Prestige sash and frame. And the finish is perfectly colour-matched to Sheerline’s colour range, in a marine grade and powder coated finish – there’s no risk of any inconsistencies in shade or colour.

They were shown alongside the new Sheerline Lift-and-Slide Patio Door, which will be available later this summer. It will offer U-values as low as 1.0W/m2K triple-glazed and 1.4W/m2K double-glazed, making it fully Part L compliant, will have full Secured by Design accreditation, and will make Part F compliance a cinch with a discrete overhead vent option.

And we launched the new Sheerline Heritage French Door. We will be the first to market with this product, which taps into the heritage steel look. Again, homeowners will be researching this online before approaching window companies, so you need a supplier that can meet those demands.

Since we manufacture a wide range of products – including Residence Collection and VEKA PVC-U windows, doors and lanterns, and Sheerline aluminium windows, doors and lanterns – and we deliver across the whole of England and Wales, we can deliver according to your needs, packaging everything together in one delivery if necessary. This reduces time on site for you, saving you money in the process.

And we are always working hard on our operations to keep those lead times keen. As I write this, we are offering: a six-day lead time on System 10 PVC-U windows and Rustique windows in stocked colours: a 10-day lead time on welded Timeless flush sash windows (20-day mechanically jointed) in stocked colours; and a 15-day lead time on Gallery 44 composite doors in any colour.

Convenience, reputation and product range – all are important when bidding for new work and staying relevant.

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