Builders’ merchant software: the value of speedy quotations

Builders’ merchant software can transform the way you issue quotes to clients.

18th December 2014

Today’s builders’ merchants have weathered the storm of the recession – an impressive achievement in itself. The market is now cautiously optimistic due to an increased demand for housing (and the political will to provide it), the announcement of several large-scale infrastructure projects and the promise of additional party pledges in the run-up to the general election. Independent builders’ merchants may still struggle to dent the dominance of the larger hardware chains, but many opportunities previously only available to larger merchants are beginning to filter down to SMEs. Software for builders’ merchants is one such opportunity. In the past, only large chains could afford the highest quality software packages, but now EPoS and stock control software are affordable for all builders’ merchants.

Our Trader software assists merchants in many different areas of the business, helping to secure savings, improve efficiency and optimise the point-of-sale experience. While stock management and accounts functions can improve the productivity of your business, it is at the point-of-sale where the biggest gains can be made, through upselling and improved customer service. Builders’ merchants must optimise all of the usual retail processes, in addition to processes that involve trade customers – such as providing quotations.

The role of quotes
A savvy builder shops around, obtaining quotes from several sources until they’ve found a good compromise between low price and superior quality. Builders’ merchants must use their network of suppliers and stock management systems to ensure that they can provide competitive quotes to trade customers. However, it is not only the figure on the quotation that matters.

The importance of speed
It isn’t just accuracy and consistency that are important to establish when creating quotes: they must also be produced quickly. Many contractors have to deal with short turnaround times and urgent work, so they need a response from builders’ merchants quickly – either instantly or within a few hours. Builders’ merchants must be able to provide fast quotes to trade clients without sacrificing their accuracy, or they risk losing the chance of securing their business for good.

Quotations and software
Builders’ merchant software can automatically produce quotes based on the products demanded by the client. This quote can then be adjusted, negotiated and transformed into an invoice in just a few clicks. Employees can keep track of the margins and projected profit the company will make from the quotation, and look at a customer’s purchase history and credit limits to see if the customer has paid promptly in the past. If the request has come over the phone, employees can email the quotation or invoice to the customer, so that they can access the document almost instantly.

Not only will a speedy quote give you a fighting chance of securing the customer’s business, but your efficient customer service reflects well on your business and may well secure you a long-term, loyal customer. Want to learn more about Trader? Give us a call or fill out our enquiry form

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