Keep evolving and improving
It is important to continuously look for ways to improve upon current water testing and water care programs. One way this can be done is to embrace new technological advances in water testing (e.g. spin tests), which are capable of providing a complete water analysis in under two minutes. These systems link into a computer program and provide a complete printout of every test performed, including product recommendations. The database associated with these tests are quite powerful and allow a retailer to store test results by customer, note information about their pool and hot tub, and combine it with information on previous products used, in addition to recording other valuable information about the customer and their backyard.
These systems can even be pre-programmed to prescribe certain chemicals sold by a retailer—both private label and other specialty water treatment products. The report recommends certain products, depending on the water quality issue, which can assist staff in selling a specific water treatment program.
This can be especially helpful for seasonal staff during the busy summer months. By embracing today’s water testing technology, combined with knowledgeable staff, a specialty retailers’ water treatment centre can be profitable by providing customers with personalized water treatment solutions.
Staff should also keep abreast on the latest health research related to aquatic fitness and hydrotherapy so they can share this knowledge with customers. This can be accomplished in several ways. For example, having articles readily available for customers to read, including these articles as printed handouts in the customer’s checkout bag to read when they get home, or sending an e-mail with links to the articles. This process should be modified continually based on customer feedback.
In the same manner, be sure to have a simple, step-by-step printed process that suggests water care products for start-ups, as well as weekly, monthly, quarterly, and even yearly water quality maintenance, including tips on draining and refilling pools and hot tubs. Additional revenue streams can develop as a result of a customized program. During the customization process, look for opportunities to develop upsell products and services that can be performed by staff. The more a retailer can offer, the greater the potential for profit.
John Bereza is the marketing manager for Haviland Pool and Spa Products, a manufacturer of water treatment products in Grand Rapids, Mich. He works to promote the company’s pool and spa/hot tub product lines and pool hoses to its network of national distributors and local dealers. Bereza has worked at Haviland since 2003 as a sales and marketing representative and, since 2010, has been the company’s marketing manager. He can be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.