Pushing the sales boundaries
Published: 08 September, 2016
Bill Barlow, UK business unit director for Conex Bänninger, discusses the time-saving and safety benefits of push-fit technologies that are proving popular with installers, and why they present great sales opportunities for builders’ merchants.
Time is money; this well-known phrase rings true in any industry. The amount of time it takes to complete a job can be key to whether it can be considered profitable.
Products that boast time-saving capabilities will always prove their worth within the industry, and merchants are usually quick to stock these products to maximise on sales opportunities. That being said, some products take longer than others to catch on but, once momentum is achieved, increased revenue is there for the taking.
Within plumbing, push-fit technology is proving to be one such trend. Push-fit fittings were designed specifically to optimise job efficiency, and to ensure that installers can use their time across jobs more effectively.
We have seen the rise in popularity of push-fit for pipe work since it was introduced in the 1980s but, like any new technology, it takes time for the market to trust it. Of course, soldering and brazing still remains a popular option for plumbers, especially when working on bigger jobs. However, the clear advantages of push-fit technology, and its ability to deliver higher profit potential, are driving demand for sales on a steep upward curve.
Alongside the efficiency benefit, there are a host of other advantages to push-fit too, such as health and safety, minimising licensing issues, universal fitting, reducing inventory costs, sidestepping logistical constraints and the fact that push-fit products can be easily de-mounted.
Firstly, the time saving benefits of push-fit technologies are one of the most popular aspects amongst installers. Braze fittings can take some time to install, but with push-fit, the process is quick and simple. Push-fit fittings are even quicker than press-fit, another popular fitting option for installers, and press is three times faster to complete than braze.
As well as time efficiency, the health and safety and practical benefits do often play a key part in the decision making process for installers on which product to buy. Push-fit is a cold solution, installers are not required to have a hot works license or pay for additional work insurances, which may be required where braze and solder fittings are concerned. Being a flame-free solution also means that push-fit fittings can be applied in any environment, regardless of how tight the working space might be, which is another reason that they are proving so popular.
In addition to the many benefits of push-fit solutions, it is important to stock the best possible fittings on the market. Copper and brass solutions are desirable as their strength and durability cannot always be matched by plastic and they are suitable in all climactic conditions.
It is also worth considering the value of push-fit solutions with a universal fitting design, as they can be used in conjunction with a wide array of materials, including copper, PB, PE-X, MLP, stainless and carbon steel. This offers installers the flexibility to connect multiple pipes, which purely plastic push-fit solutions cannot achieve, another strong sales hook.
After years of persuasion, push-fit fittings are now becoming a favourite with plumbing installers. Now momentum is behind these time-saving pipe fittings, the sales opportunities are there for merchants to cash in on.