feature: laundry

customers, it may have been some considerable time since they purchased their previous laundry appliance and as a result, it is crucial that retailers establish their customers’ likes and dislikes about their last appliance. In turn, this allows them to explain the new technologies and programmes that are now available, to help their customers make a more informed purchase decision. “In addition, it is imperative that the retailer’s sales

team keeps up to date with the latest technology and how new appliances make life easier, as well as saving time, resources and money.” Sara Bazely is of similar mind. “Laundry appliances

are largely part of a replacement market. 71 per cent of washing machines purchased are replacement products, with only 23 per cent of consumers actually planning to buy a new washing machine. What’s more, distress purchases often drive a faster purchase timeline, with consumers taking an average of 5.5 days to replace a broken laundry appliance. It is an advantage for retailers to be aware and prepared for this time limit, and to have easy and quick access to laundry appliances that are immediately available. “It is always important for the retailer to find out what the customer likes and dislikes about their current appliance and what programmes and options they find most beneficial. This will help the retailer to recommend an appliance that is best suited to them.” “It is vital that retailers explain the energy labelling system, as well as to help customers to compare products, in order to demonstrate how much energy and water can be saved by choosing an efficient model. By taking the time to estimate how much their current appliance could be costing them in comparison, consumers can understand the improvement of technology in recent years. What’s more, it may have been some time since the consumer last purchased a laundry appliance, and so they may not be aware of all the technical advances and additional benefits available that contribute to a

highly resource efficient machine.” Steve Macdonald favours feature demonstrations. “Demonstrations of unique features would definitely help, insofar as they would signpost USPs to customers that might be of the greatest use. Market research suggests that buyers who purchase in-store rather than online are usually looking for advice, so this is where retailers prove their worth with their knowledge and experience to tailor sales towards individual needs. “Explaining the key benefits of products to

the customer in the simplest of terms is also important. Sometimes it is easy to confuse consumers unnecessarily with “clever jargon”. “Laundry appliances are leading the way with smart technology, so features that are in those appliances will make their way into other categories.” Richard Treffler, category manager for Laundry

at Miele GB, agrees that demonstrations are vital. "Clear demonstrations with working samples which showcase a machines key benefits are hugely important. We feel that when customers

are well educated on a machine’s functions, they are most likely to commit to a purchase." Komal Sawley agrees, and also reiterates the

importance of good point-of-sale materials. “For the new Tefal IXEO, demonstration is key. For consumers being able to watch the product working makes them feel more assured of the marketing message. “Further, as with Groupe SEB and Tefal products, a comprehensive range of in-store POSM is important to help drive sales at point-of-purchase.” Finally, for Marco Falaschetti, education is key.

“Educating the customer on laundry appliances, new developments in the market and the advanced technology available is imperative. If you are limited for space, make sure you have the top of the range model on display. This will make it easier to demonstrate the benefits of the best appliance available and encourage a customer to trade up to a premium laundry appliance that delivers an impressive capacity, resource savings and first-class performance and equally rewarding with the additional margin made.”

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October/November 2019

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