Online boost for Altrad Belle
1 June 2020
What would we do without the Internet? People can work remotely, send emails, do schoolwork online, stream TV and listen to music. And they can go shopping.
Ray Neilson, MD of Altrad Belle UK, told me that the company experienced a surge of online sales from early on in the lockdown when many builders’ merchants closed their doors.
“People who were self-isolating or furloughed needed equipment for DIY and gardening tasks, but couldn’t buy them in person. So they were ordering their mixers and plate compactors and either picking them up from the merchants’ collection points, or having them delivered.”
Figures from the Office of National Statistics for April show that UK spending online as a proportion of the total rose to a record 30.7%, against 19.1% for the same month last year. Many retailers believe that could be the shape of things to come for a lot of consumers.
“Those hirers that remained open experienced demand from homeowners and builders doing projects at home and we’ve been taking orders for our DX1000 HT 1-tonne dumper (shown above) as a result. Now larger sites are opening up, and if the dry weather continues more work can get under way.”
On a more cautionary note, Ray wondered how Covid-19’s impact will affect future spending habits generally. Will doubts about future prospects make hirers reluctant to spend on new kit? This reinforces once again how important it is for hirers to keep in close contact with their customers to gauge their future needs.
Is online business a growth area for you, too? Do let me know!