Ben Brocklesby, Director at Origin
Converting sales has to be the top priority in 2023 for businesses across the fenestration industry.
Whilst the economy is in a state of flux as homeowners are reassessing their priorities, sales across the housing market have slowed. So much so, that annual house price growth has fallen to its weakest level since 2012.
This would have been inconceivable just a year ago when house prices were soaring, and people were even buying properties without viewing them. It now means that every single potential customer that enters a showroom or enquires online is more important than ever before.
At Origin, our priority is supporting our partners’ businesses. We view our partner network as an extension of the Origin family, so we make it part of our mission to ensure they are making the most out of the customers that walk through their doors, helping them secure those all-important sales.
To do this, we take a holistic approach. It’s not just about our market-leading products, or our unrivalled lead times; it’s also the experience and support we provide them, to help guide them through the tough times and ensure they flourish in the good.
For example, we don’t just offer product training to ensure our partners understand the technical side of the Origin Home range and how to install them. We also offer sales training to help them navigate and guide conversations with potential customers.
Alongside this, we supply all the collateral and marketing assistance they need to reach a larger, wider audience. This allows them to generate more leads and, in turn, more sales for their business.
We have also updated our revolutionary ordering and quoting system, Origin Sale Safe (OSS) to further assist our partners in converting sales. This software is a game-changer and allows partners to quote for an entire project in just five minutes.
Now, partners can automatically add their margins in OSS, which not only saves them admin time, but also means they can share dual branded quote documents with customers whilst they are still in the showroom.
To ensure we continue delivering for our partners in the areas they need us most, we have systems in place to record, evaluate, and address feedback or suggestions received. This includes having a dedicated customer experience director and an improvements committee, who meet frequently to look to resolve any issues raised.
Alongside asking for feedback, we also conduct research into the Origin buying experience to identify areas for improvement. Based on this research, we have been able to implement several changes to help our partners in the sales process. This includes amending collateral to focus on the messaging homeowners care about most, implementing changes to OSS such as automatically adding partners’ margins, and adapting our internal processes to ensure we, as a supplier, are as easy and efficient to deal with as possible.
Origin has also recently established its new partners team. This dedicated group provides new partners with extra, dedicated support when they first become a trade partner, guiding them through the Origin processes and supporting them in building their business alongside ours.
Whilst we can’t be certain of what is round the corner, one thing we do know is that supporting our partners remains Origin’s number one priority. As the housing market slows and homeowners consider where their money is best spent, we will continue to offer the best products and services to ensure a future for their businesses. This starts with improving conversions and making the most of every enquiry.