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SUPPLEMENT FEATURE ONLINE SUPPLIERS Sourcing automation technology online


Shopping for automation technology on the Internet is on the rise. Among the growing number of providers, Automation24 is a purely online shop which combines the user-friendliness of established B2C platforms, along with a comprehensive range of technical support services and very attractive discount prices, as Stefan von der Bey, managing director of Automation24, explains...


their commonalities and differences. In this way it is made clear which product is most likely the required one.


T


he number of mobile devices is growing steadily. And those who have


come to appreciate the benefits of the Internet as a consumer, do not want to miss out on them as a commercial purchaser. Thus, online shopping is establishing itself increasingly in the automation sector as an alternative procurement avenue for buyers. There are currently very few appropriate


providers. Automation24 has taken on a pioneering role in this regard. The first purely online shop for automation technology geared specifically to the user practices of the consumer sector. In addition, the website offers a comprehensive technical advisory service. Products are dispensed safely and effectively without a field sales team, because the portfolio is focused on brand name products which require little explanation. The cost advantage that this sleek business model brings with it is therefore passed directly to the customer.


QUICKLY SEARCHED, QUICKLY FOUND Automation24 sought advice from renowned experts specifically from the B2C sector in building its website. The result is a modern shop-design, which makes simple, intuitive navigation possible. Through the clear product categorisation the desired product group is found quickly. To make things even easier you can explore via the highly visible search function at the top of the page. In both cases, the user arrives at a filter option, with which he can explore the product group according to areas of application, manufacturers, prices and technical specifications. A special service available is the ‘Product Comparison’: Related Searches can be provided with a check mark with respect to, for example,


S22 APRIL 2016 | 20TH ANNIVERSARY SUPPLEMENT


Stefan von der Bey, managing director, of Automation24


EXTENSIVE INFORMATION AVAILABLE When the desired product is located via the filter function, the customer is then provided with extensive information. In addition to manuals and data sheets, the approvals/conformities and CAD data can be downloaded directly from each product page. Additionally, references are made to the suitable accessories for the respective product. Even the product pictures are advanced


quality. There are high-quality zoom images from different angles which truly convey a realistic impression for each product. For example, even the connections can be seen clearly. With many items a 360°-3D display is added. Thus, on every monitor the selected product is displayed close enough to touch, and can be freely rotated with a mouse click or viewed from any angle. In this way, the best possible product experience is ensured without the interested party requiring the product to actually be in their hand. They only need a pair of 3D glasses that can be requested free of charge on the website.


CHAT AND HOTLINE FOR QUESTIONS If questions remain despite the diverse range of information available, these can be clarified with our knowledgeable service staff. For this we find the chat bar near the bottom right of the page. By clicking on it, a window opens in which the user can enter a question. They are then in direct written communication with a competent partner. More complex questions may be


resolved with the help of the free telephone hotline, which is open Monday to Friday, 7am to 4pm. If by attempting to use these options at a time that no staff should be immediately available, the user can leave their information in the chat window, or by using the contact


form on the website. The call-back is initiated as soon as possible.


COMPLETE PACKAGE - FROM SENSOR TO THE CONTROL CABINET The complete range of automation technology includes over 2,700 brand name products in the fields of position sensors, process sensors, control systems, HMI, drive technology, power supplies, control and signalling devices, industrial luminaires, Industrial Ethernet, regulation technology, industrial controls, enclosures as well as connection and protection technology. “We are constantly working on optimising our online shop and our services,” explains Stefan von der Bey. “In addition to the expansion of our existing product ranges, we will extend our range to include industrial networking solutions with products such as AS-Interface. Variable frequency drives, as well as pneumatics are also being planned.”


ONLINE SHOPPING OPTION An online store like Automation24 therefore provides not only a convenient shopping experience. The customer is also in terms of technical support on the safe side. At the same time benefiting from favourable prices that start from ‘item quantity #1’, without surcharge for small quantities and an average of 30 per cent below RRP. Payment can be made by invoice as


usual. Likewise, a payment via PayPal or credit card is possible. Delivery is normally made within 48 hours, and as a result of the compact product portfolio, high availability is always ensured. So there are good arguments to secure online shopping as an alternative procurement channel for consideration.


Automation24 T: 00800 24 2011 24 (free of charge) T: 0178 489 5006 E: info@automation24.co.uk www.automation24.co.uk FREE daily UK shipping (from £20 net)


/AUTOMATION


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