Drain Depot is like a fine wine and 2015 was a good year.
This entry was posted on December 22, 2015.
When I cast my mind back to January 2015, I realise how quickly time goes by and what you can achieve in 12 months. We returned from our Christmas Holiday with some quite daunting sales figures for the year ahead. We were looking to achieve sales of just under 2 million between January to December. I am delighted to confirm that we smashed it, as of the 18th December we have invoiced 2.3 million which is thanks to a new ecommerce website, strong marketing campaigns but mostly to the Drain Depot team who performed exceptionally well throughout the year.
As mentioned our first task of 2015 was to launch a market leading website, this was a huge project and extremely challenging, not helped by the fact we wanted it to go live in March. The brief was that the new website was to contain new high quality imagery throughout including image zoom-over. An easy to use product filter system on the left hand side of the page that would help customers narrow down their search. We also wanted the option to add product videos, FAQ’s and installation guidelines. The two most important modules we wanted, was for us ‘Drain Depot’ to be independently reviewed, which Ekomi provided – you can now read over 250 honest customer’s reviews. The other was to make purchasing as quick an easy as humanly possible, we believe we managed to create this by offering a speedy one page check-out with post code look up and customer login facility.
Of course creating a website that no one visits is pointless. So, we embarked on a 12 month marketing campaigning focusing on local advertising, email marketing, SMS messaging and ensuring the message on our home page was always relevant and up to date. Whilst doing all this we were very careful not to be a nuisance as trying to strike the balance between good information and ‘pure sales’ was very important to us.
During the year, we increased our stock holding, ensuring that we always had ample stocks for our customer’s requirements. For example we doubled our stock holding of 110mm & 160mm PVC drainage pipe and fittings, we also did the same with the Freefoam range of PVC guttering and downpipes. The largest investment in stock was within the MDPE water pipe ranges, and as an example we now carry over 170 rolls of 25mm MDPE. We are always trying to move forward with new ranges whilst increasing the volumes on existing and 2015 has been no different, with a new coloured range of Zambelli steel guttering which increased our offering on steel rainwater by four times, the anthracite grey being a real hit. But the most exciting product for me personally was the launch of the new duct access chamber boxes. Supplied as 4 separate panels that simply push fit together, they also accept a duct up to 160mm in diameter. In fact in 2015 we added a new product to every one of our product groups, including ducting, land drainage, channel drainage, PVC rainwater, steel guttering and PVC drainage.
Customers of course are extremely important to us and we pride ourselves on our service, after all our company moto is: ‘the most important person at Drain Depot is you!’ Early in the year it became obvious that we were heading in the right direction, so we took the step to employ a new team member – Andrew Randall joined us in May as Assistant Manager. We took this action specifically to ensure our customer service levels did not drop due to the increased level of business.
2016 is going to be another challenging but exciting year, with new and uplifted sales targets that are really going to push us to our limit. With these targets in mind we are already adding a 7.5 tonne lorry to our fleet, and are launching several new exciting product ranges in the first quarter of 2016. The first product to arrive in early January is the Brett Martin 280mm diameter change of direction inspection chamber. Towards the end of January we will have large stocks of the Brett Martin 170mm deep style PVC industrial gutter in black & grey. February & March sees increases to our range of our Brett Martin PVC cast style guttering with Porcelain White coming first closely followed by Sandstone. Normally this coloured range of cast style guttering is on a 3 week lead time and by committing stocks we will be able to offer these two additional colours on a next day service.
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