PRI recently asked our tool-making contacts about successful sales strategies for hand tools and diagnostic tools—and we received a variety of answers.
“We primarily encourage hands-on demonstrations,” answered Pamela Szeto of Big C, the Torrance, California-based distributor for Dino-Lite digital microscopes in North and South America, “especially at one of the many trade shows in which we exhibit. Also, some of our authorized dealers offer scheduled demonstrations and consultations. We believe in our products, so we offer a two-year warranty and technical support for the lifetime of the microscope.” Potential add-on sales include accessories such as mounting racks and WiFi adapters.
“In addition to functioning well,” said Booth Platt of Proform, Warren, Michigan, “Proform designs many of our tools to look fun to use. We use bright colors and appealing textures. Our most successful dealers display large images of our tools and use our videos to demonstrate how to use them.”
“Here’s the best sales strategy,” advised Dick Raczuk of Koultools, Lake Havasu, Arizona. “Put our plumbing tools in the tool section of the catalog or website, but also put them right next to the fittings. When one of our distributors did that, their sales doubled. A lot of people still don’t know our tools exist”—and they are surprised and delighted to find that a problem they are having has already been solved.
CJ Jones of Jones Racing Products in Ottsville, Pennsylvania, offered similar advice. “Our AN wrenches are a great complement to our full line of AN fittings and lightweight hose. Retailers should mention them as an add-on sale when outfitting their customers’ plumbing needs. Retailers might also try bundling a ‘plumbing package’ that consists of fittings, hose and wrenches.”
Savvy readers might consider a similar package to update their own shops as well.