Upside-Down Thinking by Patric Fransko
by Patric Fransko
November 7th, 2017

Growing Trend I Have Noticed in the Window Film Industry

Inevitably, the first question I get asked the week after the SEMA Show is whether I saw anything new and interesting. While there are always several new things to see, this year I recognized a growing trend that came up in numerous discussions I had throughout the week. In fact, it seems like this trend is taking place in both the auto and flat glass side of our business. Is it a new product, technology, etc. that is going to change the industry? Nope. In fact it is something that has been gaining momentum for a few years and now seems to be hitting full speed.

So, what is this new trend? Quite simply, it is that most installation businesses are now selling premium products as a greater percentage of their total sales. They are educating their prospective customers to a greater degree and up-selling a greater percentage of them to higher end offerings. This is great for the industry in a variety of ways, but I wanted to focus on the main reason I see this as a very positive trend.

Installer Capacity

The fact is that many businesses I speak with mention lack of qualified installers as a primary reason they cannot grow their businesses more quickly. This has been an issue for many years now and it doesn’t seem to be getting any better. With that limit in place, how is a business supposed to grow their revenue and profits when they are already booked out a week or more for much of the year? If you cannot add installers, the only answer is to sell a higher end product to the customers you are already servicing.

Fortunately, the industry has made large strides in recent years in producing premium products that offer significant, tangible benefits to the consumer. Products like IR Rejecting films that offer significantly better performance vs a standard film without the need to go as dark if the client does not wish to. Also, on the flat glass side, there has also been technology improvements in low-E or “four season” films that reject heat in the summer and retain heat in the winter. These new technologies are offering the end user additional benefits that they value and are willing to spend more for.

The end result of the combination of these new films with the added attention installation companies are giving them during the selling process has enabled many companies to grow significantly while doing the same amount of work. Where an automotive shop may have installed one premium job out of every 20 cars that rolled through the shop, now they are installing 5-7 premium jobs out of every 20 cars that come in. In addition, flat glass dealers are also selling a greater percentage of both residential and commercial jobs with premium film.

In most cases, the fixed costs such as rent, equipment and labor per install remain exactly the same whether a standard film or a premium film is being installed. The added material cost of the premium films is lower percentage wise than the additional retail price that can be charged. This means that the job not only yields a higher revenue, but also a higher profit margin.

If you find that you are not selling premium products as a great percentage of your overall sales, you are missing out on this growing trend. I would advise you to embrace it, educate yourself on the newer films and make a point of integrating them into every sales presentation. You may find what others already have. You can grow your business top line revenue and bottom line profits all while installing the same amount of film.

This blog is from Focus on Film, the weekly e-newsletter that covers the latest news regarding window film and related products, including paint protection film. Click HERE to sign up—there is no charge. Interested in a deeper dive? Free subscriptions to Window Film magazine in print or digital format are available. Subscribe at no charge HERE.

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2 comments
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  1. Good article and well diagnosed. If you would have asked me what changes I have seen over the last couple of years in our business my answer is” the business is changing all the time”The reason for this is because we are looking for new opportunities to increase our sales and to build our business by adding new ideas and products all the time.As the saying goes in the classics” You snooze you lose ”

    Here are a few of the areas we have picked up new business and how we use some sales innovation to bring in more sales.

    The nano ceramic front windscreen film in 70 percent is becoming more and more popular because of its improved performances. We offer it to all our customers and explain to them the the front windscreen allows in more sunshine than any other window and it is a ”no brainier to keeping the interior of a vehicle cooler and more comfortable. It also offers additional strength as a extra laminate to the glass.
    Paint protection is slowly taking on, but for most consumers it is expensive.We sell to it in a break down offer ie. head light only or just the pumper.This way it is more affordable to the enthusiastic vehicle owners.

    Car wraps in the two tone look is becoming very fashionable as many people want to stand out from the crowd.As can be seen on the roads recently, many new cars are coming out with more of a two tone looks to give it the extra details and more style.So why don’t car tinting stores promote striping , bonnet or roof wraps to the market to ad extra sales ?We do and with the high quality exterior vinyl film available in a array of amazing colors and textures its a no brainier.

    A Fabric shield or Scotch Guard offer makes for a easy sell when you have the client right there as every body would like to keep the interior of the vehicle fooling new fresh and clean for a longer period of time.

    These are just a few ideas of how to grow your sales.We have also opened many new markets in the flat glass area and also window protection in general. If you are interested in knowing more about our ideas and ways we are moving forward from a company that started bomb proofing of windows in the seventies check out detailed web site Leon Levy Klingshield South Africa

  2. Thanks for the feedback Leon. Glad you liked the article.

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