It’s time to upgrade your AV furniture offer to match the latest generation of super sleek televisions, says Says Alphason’s commercial director Paul McCarthy.
When flat panel technology started to take off five years ago, sales of TV stands responded accordingly. Consumers were delighted to replace their bulky heavyweight CRTs for slimline flat screen panels and wanted a TV stand which reflected this new look. Enter the traditional four poles and three glass shelves support.
And oh how we all loved increasing sales as a result!
Now things are rather different…
We are hearing from retailers that their attachment rates are dipping by as much as 30-40%. And they wonder why.
The answer is quite simple. They need to upgrade their TV stand offering. They need to focus on better looking more design-led stands to cater for the second and even third generation of flat screens that they are now selling.
It’s not rocket science to appreciate the fact that second and third generation for flat screens deserve second and third generation TV supports to show them off to their best. And it in this area, that profits are to be made.
Quite frankly if you just stock the very basic four poles and three glass shelves models you will sell less and less. Consumers are becoming more demanding where stands are concerned and are unlikely to buy another basic stand if they bought one with their first flat panel.
And more often than not it’s the female of the household who is making the purchasing decision on the stand. And that means you have to consider the Wife Acceptance Factor factor.
Generally speaking, most women do not like living with spaghetti junction cables all over the living room. They want neat cable management solutions. They also want all the AV equipment housed in one unit – not littering the room. Last but not least, they want a stylish piece of furniture which looks just as good when the TV is switched off.
Just as TV manufacturers have traded up, so do you have to as well. And you have to offer product which will inspire your customers to do likewise.
TV manufacturers have given us some fantastic features – 1080, iP, 3D, LED, etc. It is now time for retailers to play their part in the continuing digital revolution and start selling TV stands which complement these fantastic features.
This message was brought home to us recently when a large and successful retailer moved over to us. He had changed suppliers when he realised that he didn’t have a higher priced ticket item to complement the super new TVs he was selling. He was forced to sell a £150 bog standard stand with a £2,000 telly.
Sometimes sales people are a little frightened about offering a good quality stand. Having managed to get the consumer to part with £1,000 and upwards for a set, they feel reluctant to try and get them to spend any more. And yet, as we all know too well, there’ s usually more margin to be made on the stand than the TV. But equally important is the fact that you would be doing your customer a disservice if you didn’t offer them the very best stand to complement their super new TV.
At Alphason, design is always very much to the fore. We have our own team of talented young designers at Hindley Green who have created some fantastic looking stands over the years. Later this year we will be introducing a new collection of design- led TV supports with medium to high ticket prices which will offer retailers an opportunity to maximise their margins.