Displaying accessories and power tools near each other can also show customers solutions to their problems that they might not have thought about.
Manufacturer displays and merchandisers are ideal for grouping products and accessories together. If a manufacturer display isn't available, rental businesses can create their own or have a manufacturer rep build one for them.
Makita has displays for some tools that are available for all of their dealers. Bosch provides rental businesses with various display options either for purchase or as an incentive when purchasing a specified quantity of product.
Selecting the correct accessory can be daunting for both the customer and rental employee. From the broad range of sizes to increasing numbers of materials and applications, accessories and their technologically advanced features and benefits become more and more complicated each year. Simple and easy-to-reference packaging can make the selection process much easier.
According to Feldner, Bosch has gone to great lengths to develop easy to read and reference accessory packaging. Simple standardized icons and color coding help customers and rental service reps identify the tool, application, size and any other special requirements or specified capacities related to the accessory.
Feldner points out that helpful accessory labeling goes beyond the outside package. "After the accessory is out of its package, additional accessory application labeling and color-coding helps assure that the right blade is used out of the tool box each and every time," he says. "By displaying accessories cleanly on the wall, anyone can quickly review their choices and make their selection simply by matching their tool or project with the appropriate icons on the package."
As with any product, your employees' knowledge of it will go a long way toward a successful interaction with customers. If they understand power tools and accessories, they will be more confident in assisting and selling those products to customers.
Manufacturers are a great resource for educating your employees on power tool features and benefits. Some suppliers offer "PK," or Product Knowledge, sessions. For example, Bosch offers PK sessions, often presented by a product specialist, that involve an in-depth discussion of various tools and accessories, including information on users, applications and special features and benefits. Makita also offers on-site PK classes for its distributors, which includes hands-on tool use and application training.
Manufacturers can also supply quick-reference product information, such as catalogs, sell-sheets and brochures that can help educate employees as well as customers. Makita offers tool flyers that point out four major features/benefits on the front with additional information, including accessories for that particular tool, on the back. And Bosch offers its hammer and grinder guides, a side-by-side comparison of each hammer or grinder and their appropriate accessories.
The Internet is also a good tool for gaining knowledge. Manufacturer websites are updated regularly with the latest information on tools and accessories.
Other avenues to obtain knowledge include customer-focused industry publications, especially those focused on testing and comparing products to each other. These can offer unique insights into the application of various tools.
"And don't forget about the customer," says Feldner with Bosch. "If you have a good customer, ask if personnel could visit a jobsite and see firsthand how various tools and accessories are used. Whether dealing with a professional or DIY customer, anyone can appreciate a rental organization with real world application experience to help make better choices."