Edgetech’s Head of Marketing Charlotte Mercer explains how the warm edge pioneers are embracing technology to deliver outstanding customer service
The future of shopping is online.
Retail has already been rocked by the rise of Amazon and its equivalents, and we’ve seen household names suffer. Traditional retailers are more focused than ever on their online presences as a result.
The scale of the shift has been spectacular. In 2017 alone, internet-only sales increased by 15.9%. By August 2018, 18.2% of the UK’s retails sales were made online.
And it’s only going to accelerate in the decade ahead. Analysts GlobalData expect online shopping to increase 30% by 2024, while Retail Economics foresee it at least doubling in the next ten years.
Fenestration, and construction more generally, is in many ways a totally different world. Industry has tended to lag behind retail and the high street when it comes to embracing the digital revolution.
But it’s inevitable that people who are used to purchasing more and more online in their personal lives are going to want and expect that in business too.
And that, combined with a long-term commitment to making IGU manufacturers’ lives as convenient as possible, is why we’ve launched Edgetech’s very first e-commerce platform.
With our quick and intuitive online ordering system, our customers can now place orders in minutes, wherever they are, and whenever suits them best.
Alongside that 24/7 functionality, it lets you make repeat orders with the click of a button and track your purchase from initial order to dispatch and delivery.
Quantity-based savings are applied automatically, and, for larger orders, you can upload directly from Excel.
Complementing our online ordering system, we’ve also brought in electronic invoicing and electronic delivery tracking to make dealing with us as straightforward as possible – and to help drastically reduce the amount of paper we use. As a business, Edgetech is firmly committed to sustainability – after all Super Spacer has helped make millions of buildings all round the world more thermally efficient – and we’re constantly looking for ways to reduce our ecological impact.
Customer Fulfilment Team
With all that, our hope is to make our customers’ lives just that little bit easier. But while online is important, e-commerce isn’t something we’ve implemented in isolation. In fact, it’s part of a much bigger ongoing shift in how we operate at Edgetech.
Since 2016, we’ve been committed to putting the needs of our customers at the centre of everything we do. We’re examining every aspect of our business, and making radical changes to the way we work with one aim in mind – better meeting the needs of IGU manufacturers.
In the last twelve months, we’ve completely reorganised our admin and customer-facing teams to offer even better service.
All departments that are heavily involved with customers on a day-to-day basis have been merged to form a new Customer Fulfilment Team.
Our receipt of goods, customer service, production specialists and others are now based in the same office, allowing them to offer a much more agile, streamlined, joined-up service.
These reforms have had an immediately positive impact – shortly after they were implemented, we went two weeks without a single back order for the first time in more than twelve months!
Best-ever customer feedback
We’re also strongly focused on measuring customer service – and we’re delighted to say recent surveys have returned the most positive results we’ve ever recorded.
We use the Net Promoter Score system for gauging customer satisfaction. Each quarter, we select forty customers at random and ask them how likely they are to recommend us on a scale of one to ten.
By subtracting the number of Detractors (people who give us six out of ten or less) from the number of Promoters (nine out of ten or above), you’re left with a total Net Promoter Score, which is used to measure overall customer satisfaction.
Our NPS scores have been steadily climbing over the last year – from 47 in July 2018 to 62 in November 2018 (a score of 50 is regarded as excellent).
In Q1 of last year, however, the company achieved 94 – the best result in Edgetech’s history, and probably one of the best NPS scores ever recorded!
That tells us we’re going in the right direction – but we’re not complacent. Whether it’s online or in person, we’ll continue striving to put customers at the centre until we can say with confidence that we’re the most customer-focused business in our industry.