The IWCE-VISION show always offers a great opportunity to catch up with industry friends, see the latest trends in window fashions, and talk to retailers and fabricators about how they apply technology to their businesses. After two days walking the crowded 2018 show in Tampa, FL, I noticed two key things:
- We rise and fall on the strength of the economy. Times are good and the economy is growing, and that is translating into more than just rising sales. Companies that were focusing solely on B2B sales have taken notes of consumers’ increased buying power and are moving into the B2C side of the business, creating more competition.
- Product trends are regional in nature, but two stood above the rest: Roller shades and motorized products continue to gain ground and attract the interest of consumers.
I spent a lot of time talking tech with franchise and independent retailers to further understand their perspectives on using point of sale technology in their businesses. SPAs (Solatech Partnership Alliance members) like Graber and Hunter Douglas are placing greater emphasis on receiving orders electronically, and that has caught retailers’ attention. And while some retailers continue to search for the elusive POS unicorn that’s easy to use, 100% accurate and “free”, many more retailers are focused on comprehensive, accurate product information that can support efficient, error-free workflow. That feedback validates Solatech’s focus on aggregating product data from a range of fabricators, from small to very large, so our retailer customers get orders right every time and #TakeBackTime.
Thanks to everyone at IWCE-VISION who took time to talk with the Solatech Team. And if we missed you, we hope to see you next year in Nashville. For those of you who attended the show, what caught your attention? Let us know at Sales@Solatech.com or @Solatech on Twitter.