Ultraframe’s new sales app has only been out for 24 hours, yet over 250 retailers have already downloaded it. If you attended the 2016 FIT Show and visited the Ultraframe stand you may well have seen the preview of the app, as well as giving their brilliant £20 VR headset a go.

I gave them a go myself and loved the idea. You simply slip your smartphone into the front of the headset after pulling down the front flap, close it up, have the app open as you put your phone in, and then you get to see a variety of VR showrooms. It’s a great way to not only break the ice with home owner at the property or the showroom, but to also show off products that perhaps retailers don’t have room to showcase.

So, with over 250+ downloads on day 1, does this signify that installers are finally getting it?

Before I answer that, here’s the press release that I was sent earlier on Thursday:


Within 24 hours of launching the new Ultraframe Sales App, over 250 retailers have downloaded it according to Adam Wilde, digital marketing manager at Ultraframe.  Previewed at FIT show and launched this week, the new App offers the ultimate retail experience for the customer enabling the sales consultant to “seamlessly and effortlessly” share literature and video content with the customer, safe in the knowledge that the information is bang up to date.

Long before any other manufacturer was even considering the digital space, Ultraframe has been developing software and tools to enhance the customer experience.  Today, their digital offering combined with the most advanced roof systems in the market, sets Ultraframe apart, as Adam explains: “we’ve developed a number of tools that enable us to two things.  First, understand the end consumer better and second, give our retailers powerful resources that both excite and reassure the end consumer during the sales process.  The App does both things.  It ensures our network partners have got immediate access to all of our marketing materials both in the showroom and the customer’s home – without the need for wifi.  The App also tells us which resources are popular, what people are searching and sharing – all of which feeds our development.”

Combined with ‘authority passwords’ the App is set up to enable the business owner to set different levels of access depending on their role.  To further enhance the App experience, Ultraframe has launched the UK’s first Virtual Reality Showroom.  With the addition of goggles, costing just £20, Ultraframe is the first retailer in the home improvement space to adopt experiential marketing techniques to inspire consumers. 

As Adam explains:  “the beauty of the Showroom is that it’s available to all our customers – those with a physical showroom and those without.  But critically, it enables home owners to virtually step inside a number of our extension systems and feel the difference between the structures.  We recognise that extending your home is a huge decision so making the right choice about what’s right for your needs and your property is essential.  The Virtual Reality Showroom really does bring the Ultraframe range to life and enables the home owner to make a more informed choice.”

The Ultraframe Sales App is available on the Apple App Store and Google Play.

A sea change?

When it comes to technology and making the most of the power of the digital format, it has tended to be fabricators, syscos, digital specialist companies etc that have been blazing that trail. Installers though I feel have been lacking. Not all I might add, but installers I think have some catching up to do.

Many retailers are of course small business who operate on small staff numbers, often working flat out with little time to learn new mediums and adapt to rapid technological change. Whilst this is a fair point, it cannot be ignored and installers do have to move with the tech times, whether they like it or not.

And perhaps that message is now starting to get through. Most people personally have a smartphone and tablet, all capable of downloading apps. The fact that more than 250 installers have downloaded Ultraframe’s sales app shows to me that they are taking an active interest in tech, and the advantages it brings to the sales process.

It will be interesting to know from Ultraframe what their download figures are after a week, then a month. If we see those numbers creeping up into four figures, not only would that signify a successful product, but also that the retailer facet of our sector is adapting and embracing the digital revolution.

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