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Energy Codes—from a Code Official’s Perspective

Written on October 29, 2014 at 11:43

Many of us are familiar with the role police and firefighters play within our communities. Police reduce crime. Firefighters put out fires. Both play a critical role in preserving the overall safety of the communities we live in.

Many code officials view themselves as having a similar role within the communities they serve. They are the “Silent Defenders” who strive to prevent the tragedies that would require the First Responders. Often these code officials view this as a calling, not just a job. It’s what they are meant to do with their lives.

When they think about preventing tragedies in the built environment, their first concern is usually fire SAFETY. How do they prevent a fire from occurring in a building in the first place? If one does occur, how do they prevent loss of life from that fire?

This includes using materials that will not contribute to the spread of fire, as well as smoke and fire alarms, sprinkler systems if deemed appropriate, etc.

Then they think about other potential causes of tragedy: building collapse due to poor design or severe weather events such as hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and flooding. How do they ensure that the buildings constructed in their community will remain standing under all the conditions that might occur?  They want to make sure the building will stand up to extreme or unusually high loads.

Another concern is the quality of the indoor environment. For example, code officials want to make sure that sufficient ventilation is provided to indoor spaces so that the occupants’ health won’t be jeopardized. This includes making sure that not just enough oxygen is coming into a home for the occupants to breathe, but also to provide “combustion air” for fuel burning appliances such as furnaces and water heaters.

Note that at no point so far in this column have the words “energy efficient construction” or “sustainable construction” appeared. Many code officials I have spoken with over the years regard enforcing these aspects of the codes as “not what I signed up for.” They are fine with it if someone else is going to be enforcing it and it doesn’t interfere with the overall life safety of the buildings in their jurisdiction.

Because they didn’t view themselves as having a role in enforcing codes for energy efficiency or green construction, they have not been as actively involved in the development of these codes compared to “life safety” codes such as the International Residential Code, the International Building Code, the International Fire Code, the International Mechanical Code, the International Plumbing Code, etc. In many cases, these code officials figured their jurisdiction would never adopt and expect them to enforce the International Energy Conservation Code or the International Green Construction Code anyway, so they didn’t need to be as concerned with it.

And to some extent, they were correct. The legacy code for the IECC was the CABO Model Energy Code. The first edition of that document was published in 1972. Similarly, the first edition of ASHRAE 90.1 was published in 1979. But neither code really saw the light of day.

The Energy Policy Act of 1992 changed this to some extent. More recently, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2010 significantly increased the number of jurisdictions that adopted the IECC or ASHRAE 90.1. And the funding incentives to adopt these codes resulted in enhanced enforcement of them, as well.

Put Yourself in Their Shoes
Now, I’m going to ask you to stop here for a moment and put yourself in the shoes of one of these code officials. You believe in promoting a safe built environment. You believe this is what you are called to do. It’s what you are to use your God-given talents to do. And now you are being told that, along with that responsibility, you have to enforce a code for energy efficient construction. 

“Well, it’s all part of the job,” you tell yourself. “If this is what I have to do in order to continue to do what I really believe in, I suppose I’ll do it.” But as you start looking at the code you are being asked to enforce, and start participating in its development, there are some elements that make you uncomfortable.

First of all, through the U.S. Department of Energy’s involvement in it, you realize that the federal government is now trying to compel you to enforce their agenda. And preservation of life safety of the built environment does not appear to be part of that agenda. That is definitely not what you signed on for.

Then, you get the sense that certain industry groups might be using this code to promote their own agenda. That is definitely not what you signed up for either, particularly if it’s to the detriment of life safety matters.

Worst of all, you become aware that there have been times during the development of these codes when preserving and promoting life safety was not the primary concern of those making the final decision on their content.

This last item might be your biggest disappointment of all. You had been relying upon your fellow code officials to watch over the content of these codes. But guess what? They were figuring they wouldn’t have to enforce them, either, so they weren’t paying any closer attention to them than you were!

So now you’re suspicious of these codes. And you not only resent being told you and your staff have to enforce them, you worry that doing so might be detrimental to your original purpose, which was to promote the life safety of the built environment.

The repercussions
So you start to question all the aspects of these codes. At the present time, there are code officials who are concerned that low-E glass might pose a fire hazard because “elevated temperatures” have been recorded in their vicinity, even though these elevated temperatures are well below the ignition temperature of any commonly used building materials.

Underwriters Laboratories is also engaged in extensive, full-scale fire testing of various wall assemblies with various types and installations of insulation. Fire officials are concerned with the significant increase in fuel load presented by the levels of insulation required by the 2012 and 2015 IECC and ASHRAE 90.1-10 and -13. The prescriptive provisions of the 2012 IECC, for example, require either the use of 2×6 wood framing for walls to accommodate the levels of insulation required, or continuous insulation exterior to the framing and sheathing, in many parts of the country. In some cases, a builder may choose to install foam plastic insulation board exterior to the framing instead of using wood sheathing to meet these requirements. The fire officials are trying to determine just what is, or is not, safe.

Due to this, its seems likely that the dramatic increases in building envelope stringency that have been imposed upon our industry over the last 15 years will become less significant over the next few years. As one code official stated during a recent code hearing, “We have come too far too fast, and now we need to slow down and figure out just where we are.”

It seems more likely we will see greater variation in the energy codes being enforced at the local level, as the local fire and code officials determine just what they are, and are not, comfortable enforcing. But isn’t it variety that keeps things interesting in the first place?

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Code Arena is brought to you by the America Architectural Manufacturers Association. Julie Ruth may be reached through AAMA at 847/303-5664 or via e-mail at julruth@aol.com.

Article source: http://windowanddoor.com/article/octobernovember-2014/energy-codes%E2%80%94-code-official%E2%80%99s-perspective

Sound View Window & Door
2626 15th Ave W SeattleWA98119 USA 
 • 206-402-4229

2014 Dealer of the Year Awards

Written on October 28, 2014 at 23:43

Window Door is honored to announce the winners of its 2014 Dealer of the Year Awards. Each year, the Dealer of the Year program recognizes window and door retailers and distributors that stand out among their peers as innovators i

n terms of business practices, sales strategies, customer service, installation methods and community service.

The Winners of the 2014 Dealer of the Awards are:

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Associated Building Supply, Inc.: Leadership in the Professional Market

North Georgia Replacement Windows: Leadership in the Homeowner Market

Charles Window Door

Excellence in Installation

California Energy Consultant Service: Excellence in Innovative Thinking

Thompson Creek Window Co.: Excellence in Community Service

Franklin Window and Door: Excellence in Retail Sales/Showroom Design

Hall’s Window Center: Excellence in Website Design

Alan-Bradley Windows and Doors: Excellence in Customer Service

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Article source: http://windowanddoor.com/article/octobernovember-2014/2014-dealer-year-awards

Orchestra Patio Door from Royal Building Products

Written on October 28, 2014 at 23:43

Royal Building Products offers the Orchestra Patio Door, available in a variety of configurations and models. The sturdy multi-chamber all-vinyl frame provides thermal performance and minimal maintenance, according to the company. Orchestra is Energy Star qualified and achieves a LC-PG60 performance rating. Frames are 7 ¼ inches deep to accommodate 2-inch by 6-inch wall construction; sashes are 3 ½ inches wide for a sturdy look, supported by reinforced stiles. High-performance rollers ensure effortless operation, Royal reports. Customers can add an optional panel to achieve a Garden Door look. The contemporary interior handle features a double mortise lock for enhanced security; the modern, exterior Icon handle is available in silver, chrome or brushed nickel. Orchestra features a 20-year limited warranty on vinyl and glass components, with one-year coverage on handles and screens.

Article source: http://windowanddoor.com/product/octobernovember-2014/orchestra-patio-door-royal-building-products

Making Friends with Yelp

Written on October 28, 2014 at 23:43

Yelp has become the default option homeowners check out for third-party reviews. Plus, both Bing and Yahoo Local now pull reviews directly from Yelp, which has greatly expanded its power, making it, by far, the most influential online review platform.

It’s safe to say that getting hit by a number of negative reviews—legitimate or otherwise—can be extremely damaging to your reputation. And, businesses that receive very few reviews on Yelp and/or if those reviews are not very strong on Yelp’s 1-to-5-star scale can greatly undermine credibility.

But, if your business has a great quantity and quality of customer reviews on the website, the sales process becomes much easier. Businesses that get a lot of reviews typically rank higher in local searches. And, obviously, the more positive reviews you get, the more that improves your overall score, which gives negative reviews less weight.

Responding to negative reviews
If you do get a negative review, never respond on the platform by criticizing the reviewer or arguing over the merits of the review. This always backfires. Nothing will hurt your credibility more than appearing angry or combative in your comments. Most importantly, try not to get upset when you get negative reviews.

Instead, reach out in a positive manner: inquire about anything that might have been unclear in the review. Depending on the situation, you can do this through a private message or by commenting directly on the review.

If the harsh critique was fair, apologize and promise to correct the problem moving forward. If it wasn’t, don’t argue. Seek to determine why the reviewer knocked your business and try to win the reviewer over. Many will update a bad review after a good interaction with the business owner.

Getting positive reviews
Yelp technically has a policy prohibiting businesses from soliciting reviews, and you don’t want to run afoul of that. But, there are many ways to subtly encourage satisfied customers to review your business. This can include adding a link to your Yelp page on customer follow-up emails or adding a “Review Us on Yelp” sign at your showroom (Yelp provides one), among other options.

Regardless of how you go about it, you should never offer quid-pro-quo for a positive review. If Yelp gets the impression you’re trying to pay or otherwise reward people for positive marks, it will hammer you, and that can be devastating. Focus on organically generating positive Yelp marks by providing great service and encouraging your happiest customers to post their opinions.

How do you handle Yelp reviews? Take this week’s poll, post a comment, and/or email me to discuss. 

How Do You Manage Yelp Reviews?

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Welton Hong is the founder and Internet marketing director of Ring Ring Marketing, a marketing firm that specializes in window and door businesses, and author of the book Making Your Phone Ring with Internet Marketing for Windows Doors Companies, available through Amazon.com. Contact him at welton@ringringmarketing.com or 888/383-2848.

Article source: http://windowanddoor.com/article/sales-marketing/making-friends-yelp

2014 Dealer of the Year: Excellence in Innovative Thinking

Written on October 28, 2014 at 11:43

EXCELLENCE in

INNOVATIVE THINKING

        

CALIFORNIA ENERGY CONSULTANT SERVICES

COMPANY LEADERSHIP: Phil Isaacs, owner

LOCATION: Rancho Cordova, Calif.

SALES VOLUME: $4.4 million, 68% of which represents window sales

EMPLOYEES: 12

PRODUCTS: Simonton, Ply Gem, Milgard and Marvin Windows

In 2005, Phil Isaacs bought a then-24-year-old window and door retail business and took it in a new direction. “We made a paradigm shift,” he says. “It was a serious investment.” Isaacs immediately added siding to the existing window and door product offering and after about three years, added heating and air conditioning services as well. “I was betting on the future,” he explains. Determined to learn all he could about building and home performance, he became Building Performance Institute certified, allowing his company to be able to work with local utilities and offer “fantastic financing and rebates,” which in turn, helped bring in substantial window projects.

 

 The crew at California Energy Consultant Services. Owner Phil Isaacs says, “We made a paradigm shift. It was a serious investment.”

Typically, the company will get a window lead, and instead of focusing solely on window size, shape, and number, the salesperson will ask questions to find out if the homeowner is a candidate for some of California Energy’s other services like heating and air conditioning. “If they need both [of those] services, they’re really good candidates,” Isaacs says. “Then we ask if they’d be interested in learning more about getting substantial rebates from utility companies.” This opens the door for the salesperson to talk about the home’s existing systems and about getting an energy assessment. Isaacs contracts out to a third party for the energy assessment and the California Energy team goes in after the assessment to show the homeowners that “if we do A, B, and C, they can save ‘X’ amount. We show them the benefits and the rebates they’ll get if they do the improvements,” Isaacs says.

California Energy takes “home performance very seriously and always tries to convert each window job into a SMUD [Sacramento Municipal Utility District] home performance job,” says Moe Sifri, quality control program manager at Efficiency First California in Oakland. “Their sales process is different from others because they offer the whole energy efficiency project support and information package to their customers: from energy assessment, to explaining the scope of work to the homeowners, to providing all available financing options in the marketplace and helping their customers choose the best option that fits their needs. And finally, they validate their improvement with testing after they have completed the project.”

It took Isaacs’ team a while to successfully convert these discussions into sales, but now they are consistently doing it four or five times a month for large projects. “Many times, we’ll walk away from a heating and air lead with a $40,000 contract for not only HVAC but for windows and a few miscellaneous items as well,” Isaacs says.

Isaacs credits the success to “fantastic sales guys” who are able to establish trust with clients. Because of the company’s affiliation with BPI and its accreditation with local utilities, California Energy is able to access rebates for its clients. For example, SMUD only gives leads to certified home performance contractors. “If we weren’t part of home performance, we wouldn’t even get a window lead,”
Isaacs says. The same holds true for California Home Financing Authority, which offers consumers loans for energy retrofitting.

“Once you get the credentials, utilize them to the fullest,” Isaacs advises. “Make sure you’re connected with every local portal, utility company, financing company—anything associated with energy efficiency—so you can be knowledgeable about offering rebates.”

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Article source: http://windowanddoor.com/article/close-ups/2014-dealer-year-excellence-innovative-thinking

2014 Dealer of the Year: Excellence in Installation

Written on October 28, 2014 at 11:43

EXCELLENCE in  INSTALLATION

   CHARLES WINDOW DOOR

LEADERSHIP: Co-owners Niko Frithof and George Pilloton

LOCATION: San Rafael, Calif.

SALES VOLUME: $5 million

EMPLOYEES: 30

PRODUCTS: Milgard, Marvin, Integrity, Simonton, Andersen, Cherry Creek and White Bird Woods windows; Western Window Systems sliding and bi-fold doors; PlastPro and Simpson entry doors

It says something about your installation process when a customer is so satisfied that he is compelled to purchase the company. And that’s just what Niko Frithiof did after using Charles Window Door for his window and door needs. “During the 10 years I was a Charles Window Door client, I recommended a lot of people to [then-owner] Richard Charles,” says Frithiof, who was a restaurant owner when he first hired the company. “The installers were very clean, super-efficient, and it seemed they didn’t leave a single stone unturned.”

 

 Charles Window Door co-owners Niko Frithiof, left, and George Pilloton

When Frithiof and co-owner George Pilloton purchased the company in 2004, they spent a lot of time speaking with the crews. “The thing we’re proudest of is that all the installers that were with the company then are still with us,” Frithiof says. “This lack of turnover means we’re able to deliver the highest quality care.”

CWD installers go through a two-year in-house training program, and the company employs several InstallationMasters Certified Installers. “They’re employees, not ‘occasionals,’” says Pilloton. “And each one has a strong level of water infiltration expertise.”

A good installation begins with the first phone call, according to the co-owners. “We sit on the same side of the table as the customer,” Frithiof says. “Within the lines we carry, we can come up with a solution everyone is happy with.” Sales consultants educate clients about different materials, help them choose products and offer design assistance for their project. The lead installer then goes over everything to make sure nothing was missed.

“Our current lead installer, Yuri Orlov, has about 25 years in the business. He is the guru and one of the big reasons we bought the company,” Frithiof says. Once he has measured everything and gone over the details, the order is placed. The project management team then oversees product delivery and the crews so they know where to start and how to protect the customer’s home.

According to Frithiof and Pilloton, clients rave about CWD’s cleanliness. “On customer surveys [done by Guild Quality] they say the house is cleaner when we left than when we showed up,” Frithiof says.

One client, Larry Atsumi, told this publication that Charles Window Door installers were “very clean in setting up and finishing, and the installation went smoothly. They said they’d finish in eight hours and it took six, but they weren’t rushing. They are a first-rate organization from top to bottom.”

 

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Article source: http://windowanddoor.com/article/close-ups/2014-dealer-year-excellence-installation-0

2014 Dealer of the Year: Excellence in Customer Service

Written on October 28, 2014 at 11:43

EXCELLENCE in

CUSTOMER SERVICE

    

ALAN-BRADLEY WINDOWS AND DOORS

LEADERSHIP: Brad Wright, founder and president

LOCATION: Vail, Colo.

SALES VOLUME: $4.5 million

EMPLOYEES: Seven

PRODUCTS: Jeld-Wen, Weiland Sliding Doors, Kolbe Windows Doors, Point Five Windows, Andersen Windows, Centor Screens, Genius Screens, Brombal steel
windows

Kolbe Windows Doors’ Terry Lukken offers the highest compliment of Brad Wright, owner of Alan-Bradley Windows and Doors: “’If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.’”

Wright’s professionalism and customer service are what brought Kolbe to a company that was originally seen as a competitor. “But we were impressed with the loyalty of Brad’s customers. It’s a real ‘love fest’ at his annual open house,” Lukken says. So, Kolbe approached Wright to become a dealer of its products.

“[Brad’s customer service] has resulted in loyal customers who want to bring all their projects to him, even those outside the local area,” adds Sue Weiland of Weiland Sliding Doors and Windows.

As for Wright, he says that continually asking himself and his staff the following questions is what sets the company apart:

  • How can we communicate with each other and with our clients better?
  • How can we educate ourselves and stay up to date on building codes?
  • How can we offer the latest technology available to our clients to help them meet their needs?
  • How can we make the most of our time from jobsite to jobsite?

“Our philosophy is to emulate companies that are outstanding in their field. We strive to improve every day and to learn from companies that are already successful,” Wright says. “This is our message to our employees: Strive to be better and find ways to improve the customer experience. We constantly talk about this internally.”

Wright says that a lot of his customers look to his company to work closely with them to solve problems. “Our clients [mostly builders] rely on us to help with design and to make sure there are no issues with products,” he explains. To do that, Wright says that a lot of things have to happen behind the scenes—educating employees, especially with respect to installation, and “having an intimate knowledge of a variety of products because we often bring different products like a Kolbe and a Jeld-Wen window together on the same project.”
 

 

 Wright goes over plans with customer Brian Claydon.

Communication with manufacturers is also key, says Wright, so that clients won’t end up with product or installation issues on the job. “Often customers will rate you on the number of problems they have and if they don’t have any that’s good customer service for them,” he says.

“He’s the best rep I’ve ever encountered,” says architect Hans Berglund, who uses Alan-Bradley for 90 percent of his projects. “They pay attention to detail and [Brad’s] exceptionally good at understanding manufacturers’ criteria and being able to get us the large windows we need for the high-end homes we work on.”

Custom home builder Tom Solawetz, of Vail, Colo., appreciates Wright’s personal efforts that, in turn, help jobs run smoothly. “[Wright] offers ongoing educational seminars that he puts on himself and he brings in other resources to assist in new product information and technology,” Solawetz says.

The company’s annual Customer Appreciation Party every January is a “highlight of the year” says Weiland. It celebrates customers’ support and their commitment to the company’s products and services. It’s always well attended and also acts as a fundraiser for a local nonprofit organization.

“Brad’s a solid guy,” Solawetz says. “In this industry, sometimes those guys are hard to come by. We love him.”

 

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Article source: http://windowanddoor.com/article/octobernovember-2014/2014-dealer-year-excellence-customer-service

2014 Dealer of the Year: Excellence in Community Service

Written on October 27, 2014 at 23:43

EXCELLENCE in COMMUNITY SERVICE

    

THOMPSON CREEK WINDOW CO.

LEADERSHIP: Rick Wuest, president and CEO; Brian Wuest, vice president

LOCATION: Lanham, Md.

SALES VOLUME: $63 million

EMPLOYEES: 426

PRODUCTS: Windows, doors, gutters and siding

Thompson Creek Window Co. has four core values as part of its mission: integrity, teamwork, excellence and accountability. Because of that, says COO Rich Trimber, “We believe in supporting the communities that support us. As a local company and local manufacturer, it’s important to do that.”

The company is on a growth track Trimber says, and as it moves into other regions and builds facilities in those communities, Trimber says showing support to the community is “important to our customers and employees.”

Sometimes organizations ask Thompson Creek for help, and other times, employees make suggestions regarding charities that are important to them. “If it’s something we can do and it fits our four core values, we develop a plan and we execute,” Trimber says. “We don’t do anything if it’s not a full plan and a commitment.”

Last year, the company helped the family of Martin Bodrog, a victim of the Washington Navy Yard shooting who had been working on his home before he was killed. Through an employee and a local church, Thompson Creek got involved in helping Melanie Bodrog and her family. The crew installed 130 feet of gutters, 10 windows and new siding (totaling about $30,000 in donations).

 

 Shane Hauff, Justin Wilson, and Casey Cherneski (pictured left to right, in the bright green shirts) are among the Thompson Creek employees who partner with local communities on various projects.

The company also partnered with First Baptist Church of Alexandria, Va., and pastor Davie Serrant of the Deliverance Baptist Church on the Island of Dominica to build homes for people in need in the city of  Roseau, Dominica. Thompson Creek donated 40 windows and 20 doors for the project.

One ongoing project with the Arlington Youth Ministry in Virginia has employees and local teens helping to rebuild houses in Appalachia, Trimber says. “We sent our best experts down there and ended up helping others learn how to do the install work and fix things that hadn’t been done right. That was a lot of fun and uplifting; it was great to see 800 teenagers out going to work every day to build and rebuild houses for folks that needed them. We anticipate it being an annual program for us.”

Trimber says one goal for the company’s giving is to achieve diversity. “We give through donations of cash, our time, products and services. We help with veterans, education causes, fighting diseases, environmental issues.”

Helping the community comes back to the company in the form of happier employees and in showing prospective customers that the company lives its values. While Thompson Creek doesn’t actively seek public relations coverage, its good deeds do not go unnoticed by the press and consumers. “We take opportunities when they present themselves,” Trimber says. “We ask, ‘Can we do this and should we do this?’ and if it’s a ‘yes,’ then we do.”
 

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Article source: http://windowanddoor.com/article/close-ups/2014-dealer-year-excellence-community-service

2014 Dealer of the Year: Excellence in Website Design

Written on October 27, 2014 at 23:43

EXCELLENCE in

WEBSITE DESIGN

    

 

HALL’S WINDOW CENTER

LEADERSHIP: Jim Scarr, president and CEO; Mario Grandinetti, marketing director; Andy Grandinetti, business manager

LOCATION: Sacramento, Calif.

SALES VOLUME: $9.5 million

EMPLOYEES: 35

PRODUCTS: Infinity replacement windows from Marvin Windows and Doors, doors from Andersen and Western Window Systems, Jeld-Wen Aurora fiberglass entry door system, ProVia fiberglass entry door system, James Hardie Siding

Since Mario Grandinetti, marketing director for Hall’s Window Center, began working for his parent’s company in 1999 he has been part of four website updates. HallsWindowCenter.com’s latest incarnation, launched in mid-September, is a departure from traditional window and door sites—stressing branding over product and using the latest technology to tie into marketing.

“The most important thing is that someone’s first impression is who we are as a company and what we stand for,” says Grandinetti, who has owned Hall’s Window Center with his brother Andy and Jim Scarr since 2012.

 

 The Hall’s WIndow Center team

“Anyone can sell Marvin or Andersen; that doesn’t make entry door system, James Hardie Siding us unique,” he says. “We don’t just replace windows and doors. Homeowners come to us for the tough projects. If someone wants something other than the typical replacement window, HWC is where they go. We do complete tear outs, new interior and exterior trim, and will convert windows to French doors. We’re more like a remodeling company.”

The Hall’s Window Center site, developed by the Purple Cow Agency, www.purplecowagency.com, highlights that sentiment right on the homepage with photos of Grandinetti and Scarr and the words “Demanding? Spoiled? Tough? Picky?—Then we’re the window and door company for you!” They back up their statements with links to social media and Guild Quality survey information.

“We survey each and every customer we do work for, and 65 percent of our clients fill them out. We get a good feel for what’s working and what needs improving,” Grandinetti says.

Other tabs on the site include one each for windows, doors, siding, contractors, projects, reviews and contacts. Along the right side of each page is a section asking visitors to “book an estimate.” Another easy-to-see tab in that section offers brochures, which helps to capture site visitor emails.

The company tracks site visitors via Google analytics and a particular phone number, so that HWC’s owners know which marketing tactic is bringing in leads. “We know when someone calls from the website phone number,” Grandinetti says.

To really make the site turn leads into sales, the company has invested in Elcom, www.elcomcms.com, a robust content management system (CMS) that ties into HWC’s digital platforms including Sales Force and an email marketing system called Marketo, www.marketo.com.

“We can present different content to people based on the search terms they’ve used or based on their experience with the site. Return users will see different products or services we believe they’re interested in,” says Grandinetti.

 

 The new site also incorporates responsive design to make it mobile friendly.

This strategy helps with conversion rates: If a visitor lands on the site and sees what they’re looking for right away, they’re more apt to get in touch with the company. The CMS also sends emails to visitors who have left an email address requesting a brochure or if they’ve been in contact with the company through a home show or showroom visit. While there’s a learning curve for setting up the system’s back end, Grandinetti knows the time required to do this will be well spent.

The new site also incorporates responsive design to make it mobile friendly, says Welton Hong, president of Ring Ring Marketing, who has worked with Grandinetti. “This means that the site automatically shrinks according to the size of the viewer’s screen. This is going to be the new standard going forward since it makes sites easier to navigate.”
 

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Article source: http://windowanddoor.com/article/octobernovember-2014/2014-dealer-year-excellence-website-design

2014 Dealer of the Year: Excellence in Showroom Design

Written on October 27, 2014 at 23:43

 

EXCELLENCE in RETAIL SALES/SHOWROOM DESIGN


    

FRANKLIN WINDOW AND DOOR

LEADERSHIP: Cori Brown, owner and president

LOCATION: Franklin, Ind.

SALES VOLUME: $700,000

EMPLOYEES: Eight

PRODUCTS: Marvin, Hurd, Sun and ProVia;Emtek hardware; Phantom retractable screens; Therma-Tru doors

In 2012, Franklin Window and Door owner Cori Brown bought a dilapidated circa-1900s building that was originally a car dealership in Franklin, Ind.’s historic district. A highly visible space with lots of storefront windows, the building had potential, she says. It took a year to restore and renovate the space. The crew removed the brick, raised the building’s southwest corner 4 inches, gutted the interior and uncovered a pressed metal ceiling. They repurposed barn wood beams from a local barn built in the 1800s. The resulting space has a “rustic and classic feel,” Brown says. “It’s very different from a typical showroom. There’s a whole different ambiance.”

Since the opening of Franklin Window and Door, dozens of downtown businesses have gone through similar transformations, undergoing either a complete renovation or a facade facelift and bringing more traffic to the area.

 

 The team at Franklin Window and Door. Back row, from left to right: Fay, Sparrow, Toby Cave, Andrew McCloud, Adrian Loveday, Rachel Ford. Front row, left to right: Michael Dalton, owner Cori Brown, Scott Brown.

According to Krista Linke, director of community development for the city of Franklin, “What [Cori Brown] did with that building was just amazing. It was one of our worst buildings downtown. They basically rebuilt it and made it historically appropriate. It’s a great example of the kind of work we want to see take place.”

But it’s not just about creating a beautiful building. The 2,500-square-foot showroom’s boutique aspect fits the products Franklin Window and Door sells, says Marvin Windows and Doors representative Tim Houz. “It’s perfect for the higher-end quality products,” he says. “There’s a charm and appeal. Everything from the display, to the signage, the carpeting and flooring makes customers feel that they are taken care of and that a large investment with this company is worth it.”
 

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Article source: http://windowanddoor.com/article/octobernovember-2014/2014-dealer-year-excellence-showroom-design

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