The way we are selling our products to customers has changed, well at least I think so anyway.

I joined the industry at 17 years old, where the amount of choice then, compared to the amount of choice now was fairly low. So when I was selling to customers at that time I would focus heavily on the more technical side of our products. Things like locking points, steel reinforcement and anti-snap cylinders were good selling points for us at the time. But I can honestly say it’s different now.

Customers are far more educated about our products now and know that a world of colour and customization lay at their hands. Finally, windows and doors are desirable products that can excite a customer with a sense a style. Because of this selling is now a totally different ball game. Especially with entrance doors. The technical side of our products have become distinctly boring compared to the fresh and funky designs our windows and doors now come in. Don’t get me wrong, customers are still interested in things like locks and reinforcement, but the amount of time they want us to spend covering these areas is a lot less now.

You can tell. I see it on customers faces when I get knee deep into the technical stuff. Their attitude changes though once we start talking about things like spraying, old fashioned ironmongery and custom glass. That sort of stuff is just so much more appealing than multi-point locks – hence I have tweaked and changed the way I do my demonstrations. And I think a lot of others have too.

We were all having a discussion in the office the other day and we all agreed that the interest from customers to know about the technical details is almost zero now. We all believed that the key to capturing the imagination and business from our clients is far more about the style and design now.

Things have changed. Energy efficiency and locks still matter, colour, style and design matters more. This is a good things for our industry. It demonstrates how our sector has been transformed from dowdy to designer in just a few years.