April 20, 2021

Get Ready for The Surging American Economy–Now!

By Paul Bieber

The news last week was astounding. More people are getting back to work and the overall economy in the U.S. is growing. People with their second COVID shots are starting to get out of their homes. The consumer sales in our industry are face-to-face, not on the internet. Okay, you get the hint. Let’s get our retail glass businesses ready for the surging economy.

First Step: Clean up and organize your showroom. Show the products you sell. Ask your manufacturers for full size displays of various bathroom situations. If they don’t help with your cost here, or fully supply you, find another fabricator. Ask your window manufacturer to supply working samples of wood, aluminum and composites in various colors and makeups.

Second Step: Have a display that shows the benefits of low-E glass. Have a cross section of a triple glazed IG unit. Sell lami as a security and safety glass product. Put up a display from your metal providers on automatic door closers. Show colors and gauges of different aluminum styles. Display pictures of your work in your community.

Third Step: Your best sales creator, ever, is your team that meets customers. Train and retrain your office staff to know all of your products and ensure their in-depth knowledge on your main products. Send your in-house and field salespeople to training sessions at your vendors. Ask manufacturer’s reps to hold trainings in your shop for installers and your sales team. The more knowledge on your team translates directly to more sales. Build your team where each person has a specialty and helps others with their specific knowledge.

Fourth Step: Plenty of light in your showroom helps sell products. Clean your windows. Take down signs that are more than two years old. Every piece of display glass needs to be wiped down every morning. No one will buy from you if your showroom products have a layer of dust.

Fifth Step: Make your trucks moving billboards. Wash them at least once a week. Keep them neat with well-painted logos. Show your phone number in large, readable, lettering.

Sixth Step: After your showroom and building are all spiffed up, hold a very public open house on a Saturday. Get a local radio station to do a remote broadcast from your store. Send personal invitations to architects, general contractors and the press. Invite your vendors to be there for their valuable input to customers. Update your local and internet advertising stating you are the best glass shop in town. The consuming public likes positive statements.

And for the COVID question. It only takes one COVID-positive person walking around your showroom to transmit this horrible disease to your entire team. Don’t make a political statement where the downside is illness and possibly death. You don’t need the news coverage of an outbreak centered in your company. Have a bin of masks at your front door with a polite sign asking walk-ins to please wear a mask. Leave your political statements out of your business.