With its history in installation services across other industries, Moss of Bath was well placed to offer the same in the CE sector. MD Tim Moss says “without custom install, I have no business”.

40 E

RT Award-winning Moss of Bath was founded in 1962 – originally focussing on selling small electrical appliances and black and white televisions. In the 1980s and 90s, the retailer was involved with the installation of commercial audio systems to the pub, club and fi tness industries, as well as background music systems into retailers, restaurants and other businesses. It also became the offi cial installer of Public Address systems to the Diocese of Bath and Wells.

In 1999, it sold its fi rst fl at panel screen and immediately trained and dedicated a new custom installation team specialising solely in the wall- mounting of televisions. Moss of Bath’s Managing Director, Tim Moss, tells

ERT: “Our range of in-house custom installation services, across six vans on the road, now

includes multi-room

audio, data and network solutions, wall-mounted televisions, bespoke cinema rooms, satellite and aerial installations. On average, all six of our vans are booked two weeks in advance. “Without custom install, the business would not be viable.”

Less is more

The Moss of Bath business occupies two adjoining fi ve- storey Georgian townhouses in the centre of Bath; part of the in-store space is a new smart home CE showroom with products from the likes of Sonos, Technics, Sony and Ruark Audio. The store also has a dedicated television

showroom, two hi-fi demonstration lounges and a cinema room; in addition, the Moss of Bath Service Centre is located on the fl oor above. Mr Moss adds that he has made a conscientious

and recorders/PVR. Moss of Bath is a retailer at heart – it was an early adopter of custom installation, growing from one to six vans out on the road directly employed with custom install business. “We have seen signifi cant growth in this area; CI

now represents 70 per cent of the overall business revenue,” continues Mr Moss.

decision to reduce the number of products displayed in-store; he now displ ays fewer products in a less cluttered, cleaner and more professional way, including individual room sets. He says he also recognises the importance of creating ‘theatre’ as consumers enter the store, to offer interactive demonstrations, clearly explain features and benefi ts, and to ensure that the

consumer receives a memorable

experience whenever they visit. In-store product categories include televisions, smart speakers and multi- room audio, IT equipment (including data networks, EOM, wireless products etc)

Clean and inviting With so many different routes to market for the consumer to buy the same product, Mr Moss highlights that it is vital that CE retailers ensure their stores remain clean and inviting, that sales staff are presentable, well trained and knowledgeable and that products displayed in-store are set-up correctly and are active and interactive. He says that these are the differentiating factors that will attract consumers to a retailer.

The future of consumer retail Mr Moss adds: “Without custom install, I have no business. I have no idea how those CE retailers who only sell boxes can survive long-term on such tight margins. “The retailing of consumer electronics products has changed. The business model is so different to how it was 10 or even fi ve years ago. Moss of Bath has constantly evolved and reinvested to create an umbrella of in-house services that no other retailer (locally) can match. “Simply selling a box is no longer a viable business model; in our opinion, consumers are looking for so much more, from knowledgeable sales advice, professional installation, after-sales support and the longevity and ethics of the business.”

July/Aug 2019

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