Latest Articles in FEATURE ARTICLE

  • manufacturerslookingthumb.jpg
    Big investments are few, but companies are adapting to stringent performance criteria in the market, and thinking about even stronger requirements on the horizon
    Following a period of little investment in new plants and production lines, window and door manufacturers are beginning to look again. Some see signs that sales are creeping up, but the primary driver is the need to upgrade window and door lines to meet new, more stringent performance criteria, including the new 30/30 minimums set for new tax credits, revised Energy Star criteria set to go in... more »
  • Move to JIT manufacturing can shift costs elsewhere without an integrated strategy
    Today, many window and door manufacturers find themselves in survival mode. To combat a decrease in demand, some are frantically trying to increase their sales, while others are searching for ways to augment profitability. The most successful companies are not looking to boost sales alone, they are also investing in proven cost cutting methods. Reducing overhead is an obvious path toward... more »
  • gorelatest.jpg
    Suppliers see more screens becoming less visible altogether or retracting out of the way when they’re not needed
    Screens play a crucial role keeping insects out, but few would argue that they enhance the look of windows and doors. Two types of products enhancing that downside of screens are gaining momentum in the market. Emerging recently, but potentially transforming the market quickly, are screens designed to be less visible. “The word’s getting out,” says Alan Gray, VP of sales for... more »
  • Meeting higher standards will be essential to success
    From higher energy performance standards to continued consolidation, to moving past its reputation as the "cheap" window option, Window & Door looks at the 10 trends likely to shape the vinyl industry moving forward. Agree with the 30/30 provisions or not, you have to admit the stimulus bill sure pulled the window and door industry out of its economic coma. Manufacturers,... more »
  • Presentation and display strategy should reflect products' quality and attributes
    Rolling travel bags and sleek cases can give salespeople a professional, pulled-together look when they walk into a home. Sales and Marketing are two words that are often connected in company structures, position titles or department names, but too often it seems like the marketing department and sales staff are from different worlds. What happens between a great marketing plan and the... more »
  • shinethumb.jpg
    Boosting marketing and PR efforts during recession makes good companies great
    There is no news like good news–especially right now. You can’t open a newspaper or magazine without becoming depressed about the state of the economy. At times like this, is there really no good news to share or is it just overshadowed by a dark cloud of recession? Take note that many great companies were born from recession, including well-known empires, such as Proctor &... more »
  • wp4500_3.jpg
    Demonstrating the intangibles makes it easier to sell and upsell
    Consumers have new buying criteria, new performance expectations, and a savvy new attitude from the window research they perform on the Internet before the salesman come into the home. Many features that used to be the primary reason for selecting a window or door are being overridden by a product’s energy performance or green footprint. The recent passage of the stimulus bill has put an... more »
  • rbidoors.jpg
    Pre-recession trends continue to gain some momentum in pre-hanger channel
    Some of the trends that were emerging or blossoming before the economy began to bottom out continue to define pre-hangers, even in the current economic environment. That’s not to say the economy isn’t having a big impact on this supply channel—it certainly is. But there are plenty of pre-hangers and millwork specialists that have adopted the attitude to keep on keepin’ on... more »
  • roto_tilt.jpg
    Manufacturers and distributors can find new opportunities with higher-end niche products
    Today’s economic climate has window and door fabricators and suppliers alike searching for new strategies to acquire additional market share in order to survive the financial turmoil. No single approach is likely to enable companies to reach that goal, but one area of the market that appears to be a target opportunity is the growing niche for European-style window and door products. These... more »
  • Looks still matter, but suppliers say window and door manufacturers are focusing more on function
    Window and door manufacturers are asking their hardware to do more. In today’s tight market, there’s a greater need for differentiation. That means increased emphasis on both function and style. Manufacturers are also looking at hardware that enables them to target new niches. Tilt/turn products are one example, and larger, wide-opening doors are attracting significant attention.... more »