Once again I find myself talking about the future, this time looking at digitalisation, but I want to talk about the digitalisation of electrical wholesale business in particular rather than the development of products in the market.
At a recent EDA forum in Exeter Nicola Surman, Regional Sales Manager at Hager, talked about the need for digitalisation in the wholesale market. Part of what was highlighted was the ability to make things more personal with digital offerings.
This may seem a bit of a contradiction given that there is no actual face-to-face conversations, but having social media platforms giving out regular updates and encouraging user interactions could allow you to reach out to new customers you hadn’t spoken to before. Plus, you have a constant stream of information getting out to a vast audience, rather than speaking to only current customers about the latest deals or happenings at your branch.
In today’s ‘instant’ culture, consumers expect products delivered next day or even on the same day with a smooth, simple process to get to that end. One of the easiest ways to achieve this is through a reliable e-commerce platform. Sam Rutley, Managing Director at PushON is all too aware of this – he describes the reasons for the change on Page 12. He says: “Why the shift? As ecommerce technology has evolved, online retail in all sectors has gone from being (potentially) cumbersome and clunky, with long waits for shopping, unexpected delivery charges, complicated or convoluted returns and poor stock management, to smooth, streamlined and cost-effective.” This not only represents a positive change in how your customer shops with you, but how a positive change in how you handle your stock in more streamlined approach. Being able to capture data, for example, can offer vital information such as the customer’s job title, favourite products and the type of work that they carry out. This gives you an insight into your customer that you may not have had otherwise. The industry is certainly seeing itself evolve along with electricians and the products themselves, the onus is on you to make sure you don’t get left behind in this new digital age.
Elsewhere in this issue, the heating feature includes a look at the latest SAP 10 regulations and how they may influence how homeowners heat their homes in the future. Whilst the fire and safety feature looks at the latest equipment designed to keep van tools safe from theft, as well as looking at the need for fire testing of cable management products to become a priority to avoid any future incidents. As ever, there is the usual news, products, special reports, competitions, giveaways and more.
Have a good month and enjoy the issue.