Despite temporarily closing all franchise stores, kitchen retailer Kutchenhaus says it has grown its business in virtual appointments and designs.
Since the first week of lockdown, and the inevitable reduction in activity due to the closure of stores, the company says it has since seen a 97% increase in online enquiries and a 450% increase in sales.
The retailer ensured all showrooms were set up to work remotely and offer virtual presentations to customers even before the lockdown was fully implemented, allowing customers to send dimensions to a local designer who will then work on the concepts and present them remotely.
With the success of virtual appointments, franchisee stores have continued trading and new showrooms are opening in the next two weeks in Shoreham-by-sea, Altrincham and Southend-on-sea.
Sean Ford, national head of sales and operations for Kutchenhaus, said: “Kutchenhaus is on an ambitious growth path over the next two to three years, however being in the grip of a global pandemic has certainly presented some challenges and even positively altered the way we do business in some cases.
“We anticipate that even after the lockdown measures are eased we will see a continued change in consumer behaviour and therefore the new method of transacting remotely will become a permanent and vital element to our business. Supporting our franchise owners is a top priority and we’re delighted that all stores have continued to trade during these difficult times. We’ve seen a huge shift in customer shopping habits and thankfully the business was able to react to this.”