Vancouver online home improvement product marketplace BuildDirect has announced the launch of its online platform, called Home Marketplace, aimed at home owners engaged in remodeling or repairing their homes.
The platform puts suppliers directly in touch with consumers, eliminating the middle man and increasing efficiency when it comes to finding the correct goods for the job.
Home Marketplace took over a year for BuildDirect to put together, and covers the various stages of home renovation, from planning and design through to selecting products and delivery.
One factor explaining why building Home Marketplace took some time is down to the need to build an efficient supply chain capable of shipping heavy goods in the same way that other online retailers ship books.
“The $500 billion home improvement industry has been lacking innovation for too long, but today as Home Marketplace officially launches, BuildDirect can perfectly showcase our vision for change,” said BuildDirect co-founder, president & CEO, Jeff Booth. “Home Marketplace marks an important milestone in our mission to create the world’s simplest and most trusted solution for home improvement. We are delighted to make it available to millions of homeowners and suppliers.”
A survey of home renovators commissioned by BuildDirect found that while 93% of respondents agreed that completing a home renovation qualified as one of their “most satisfying” feelings, more than 50% discovered that the process was much more difficult than they expected going in.
The study was conducted from December 7 to 15, 2015, among 1,000 randomly selected American homeowners who were also Vision Critical American Community members.
Price, selection of goods, and time to delivery were the main aggravating factors in amping up that difficult feeling.
Pointing to the difficulties in finding the right goods for such a gargantuan task as renovating a home, three out of five renovators in BuildDirect’s survey visited three or more different home renovation stores, and a full 34% made 10 or more separate trips.
Almost half of them ended up choosing different products than the one they originally wanted because of price.
“Next year, nearly three quarters of renovators will likely start another project, with 41 percent looking for more product variety at a lower price,” added Booth. “I am thrilled that our technology will address these pain points and more.”
Home Marketplace, like online retailers that sell other consumer goods, will expose home owners to the widest array of goods that can’t be stocked at a brick-and-mortar shop, simply owing to limited shelf space.
The direct connection between home renovators and suppliers facilitated by the platform keeps costs lower than they would otherwise be in a normal retail environment, frequently up to half the price offered at big box stores, according to BuildDirect.
BuildDirect offers up to five free product samples shipped overnight with doorstep delivery through the service, and all orders are backed by a 30-day money back guarantee.
“With BuildDirect I can simply go online and with the click of a button, find what I’m looking for, get the information I need, compare products with their reviews side-by side, and trust that purchases will arrive on time and in good condition,” said BuildDirect customer Rajan Sodhi. “It has completely transformed my remodeling experience.”
For support, BuildDirect connects prospective home renovators with a team who can answer their questions and assist them in finding the right solution for their needs.
The site also offers access to design tools that allows people to plan the look of their space in advance of making a decision.
For home renovation suppliers, the Home Marketplace portal allows them to reach a broader audience than they otherwise would and to configure an online showcase for their products without the need to deal with big box retailers.
“BuildDirect has introduced something of real value with Home Marketplace,” said Stephen Staikos, General Manager, National Strategic Accounts, North American Flooring at Armstrong World Industries. “Through the new platform, we can control our inventory, understand where demand for our product is, and ultimately better serve our customer.”
The portal also offers suppliers an analytics platform comprised of three proprietary tools, BuildDirect Demand Rank, BuildDirect Product Rank, and BuildDirect Inventory Rank, that allows them to identify optimum competitiveness for a product in a given marketplace based on customer interest and ideal location.
Home Marketplace also solves the problem of shipping goods for suppliers by leveraging reduced freight costs by calculating the most cost-effective and efficient delivery method between the supplier and the customer’s home address.