April 2021

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It’s Time to FLiP

DOORCO is set to transform the market with the introduction of FLiP, their own revolutionary cassette system. FLiP has a unique Foam in Place technology that delivers a superior seal, and three design options that include clean, modern profiles through to traditional bevels, offering aesthetic freedom never seen.

Dan Sullivan, DOORCO’s MD tells us more: “FLiP is the new glazing cassette system developed by DOORCO and made in the UK. It is an exciting development. Not only does it offer us greater control over the supply chain and guarantees for our customers, it also unlocks endless possibilities for door design.

“Contemporary homes reflect the architecture of today. Even in renovation, there is a massive shift in demand towards clean lines and stark minimalism. When it comes to doors, DOORCO are trailblazers in this arena with designer-led doors such as Monza II and Links. But to date, the lack of contemporary glazing options has restricted opportunity for further product development. Others have tried to solve this issue, but no new designs have been launched that have anywhere near the same qualities as the current bestselling traditional system, and there’s a reluctance from incumbent cassette manufacturers to make any substantial development investment.

“DOORCO is committed to innovation and thanks to our independently owned status, we are in charge of our own destiny. We felt it was time to address the glazing cassette problem. Working with innovative UK based designers and drawing on the DOORCO team’s experience and knowledge of the sector, we set about a considered and conscientious development process that has resulted in a range of door glazing cassettes that are more flexible, more practical and aesthetically pleasing.

“FLiP offers the freedom to choose the design, finish and colour to suit any style of house and make a unique statement.  The three design options include clean, modern profiles through to traditional bevels, all with a low profile to fit nicely with the overall design of the door, so you can be:

  1. Traditional with Standard – the redesigned moulded option with a woodgrain finish
  2. Eclectic with Flat Grained – squared-off flat profile with a woodgrain effect,
  3. Modern with Flat Stipple – squared-off flat profile with a smooth, stippled effect that matches Links.

“FLiP’s Through Colour Technology ensures a perfect match to the standard DOORCO colour range, or if you are looking for something bespoke, your choice of cassette and door can be painted together using our bespoke colour service.

“As well as being stylish, FLiP delivers on performance too. The revolutionary Foam in Place technology offers pre sealed outer frames delivering a superior seal, with structural connectors that are flexible to use with 24-26mm glass units and a unique tilting head that adjusts to the thickness of the glass. The innovative angled corner protector adds reduces corner flare and supports heavy units, with an optional component to insert in larger apertures offering additional security if needed. Consistent components are installed with a simple click-together mechanism that requires minimal use of tools (just a screwdriver), resulting in a cassette that sits fit flush to the surface of the door.  The cassettes are fully re-glazeable.

“FLiP has undergone extensive testing to ensure it is weatherproof and secure. Doorsets containing the system have been tested to BS6375-2015 and in accordance with EN1027. Furthermore, they achieved over 1000pa through the glazing aperture during weather testing. This is further supported by DOORCO’s 10-year warranty.

“For DOORCO, having our own cassette system is an exciting advancement that opens up endless possibilities for our customers. FLiP is available now from DOORCO in familiar shapes and sizes to suit our current range of door designs. But, as our doors are a canvas that is versatile and comes in all shapes and sizes, we now have the opportunity to explore how we can really take door design – contemporary, traditional and beyond – to the next level.”

To find out more about FLiP and to register your interest, please visit: www.flipuk.com

Composite door trends: March/ April 2021

Ben Aspinall, IT and Marketing Manager for DOORCO, tells us about what’s currently trending in the composite door sector.

Door Trends

My role as IT and Marketing Manager means I am really close to the door trends we see at DOORCO. With an IT hat on, we operate a fully integrated IT-based manufacturing system that communicates orders, stock levels, capacity and allows us to create detailed reporting.

From a marketing perspective, as well as having access to sales analysis, we know what people ‘like’ on our social media. The power of marketing is also to drive trends. For example, it’s a well-known fact at DOORCO, that whichever door is on the front of our brochure is always a best seller in that period!

Over the last 12 months we have seen a massive shift in the norm, so in this first column, I am going to share with you five key trends which may surprise you:

Modern choices

There has been a definite shift in our best sellers since we came out of the first lockdown. Historically, traditional door styles have taken top billing and although our more modern door styles like Monza II, Farmhouse and Links have been growing in popularity, the volumes of sales over the last year has been unprecedented.  So far in 2021, our best-selling door is the Farmhouse. In fact, nearly half the doors we’ve sold this year have been a Farmhouse design. Carnoustie is second place, closely followed by Monza II.

Colour

There is a definite shift towards colour throughout the fenestration industry and our painted door sales are up 55% on this time last year. In fact, we’re just in the process of extending our paint lines to keep up with demand. Tastes are getting bolder and the pink doors – a movement started on social media by Instagram-influencer Mrs Hinch and her Hinchers (as her followers are known) – is a growing trend.  DOORCO launched its own Pink Door Range in aid of We Mind & Kelly Matters last year with success. But even considering all this, grey is still king. Anthracite is our top selling standard colour, DOORCO has 13 shades of grey in our current colour range, and in February, grey doors made up 38% of our sales.

Glass

Glass has a major impact on a door’s overall style and allows the consumer to add their own personal statement. Adding a modern glass like Bold Pink to a traditional door design like Lytham can really transform it into something contemporary.  Glass supply has always been a challenge. We took the decision to massively invest in glass so we can supply direct and have better control, as well as increasing our range with bespoke designs. Our customers have really taken advantage of this: In the first 2 months of 2020, 34% of our doors were sold with glass (glazed and unglazed); this year that figure has increased to 79%. More interesting, our bespoke glazing service has increased by 148% in the same period.

 

Customers need more help

Glazing is just part of our flexible prepping service which our fabricator customers are increasingly making use of. There are several factors to this: Firstly, there’s no denying we’re in a home improvement boom (long may it last) and we’re all buzzing. Supply issues are widely reported, and some say the pandemic has taught us patience, but the ‘amazon-inspired next day delivery’ want is still very apparent. There is still a demand for fast turnaround and we often get enquiries as to whether we can deliver a door quicker than they’ve been quoted by a competitor. Even with a JIT (Just In Time) delivery service for fabricators and short lead times across the board, more and more are turning to us for painting and prepping support to simply keep up with demand.

Secondly, we are all still operating under a lot of strain with health and safety constraints, social distancing and illness. As with everybody else, we’ve suffered with delays due to the global shipping crisis combined with sheer demand in some of the emerging trends we’ve mentioned above, but we’ve worked hard to overcome these issues and support our customers as best we can. Keeping our workforce healthy with stringent procedures and regular testing means we’ve been able to step in and support them during downtimes. Levels of prepping and painting have nearly doubled this year.

Marketing on Instagram

Over the last year, DOORCO’s marketing strategy has changed to become more consumer facing. The biggest catalyst was the desperate need to keep our lines of communication open when we headed blindly into the first lockdown, to make sure we had leads to come back to.  With many of the usual channels closed, we turned to social media, and in particular Instagram.

Instagram is pictorial-led, a place of inspiration, and property renovation is a big trend.  There’s a whole network of renovators and self-builders, designers and influencers (like Mrs Hinch and her followers) sharing their stories and there are some fun hashtag’s (like #ihaveathingwithdoors) that you can plug into.  For DOORCO, it’s about brand awareness and lead-generation on behalf of our customers, although it has also become an influential platform for trades people, so we get trade enquiries too. We started sharing inspirational images of the things that make DOORCO unique – Farmhouse, Monza II, a wide range of colour choices, a bespoke glass collection and our added value services. This has certainly paid dividend – from an almost standing start, we have nearly 2,500 followers, get regular enquiries from homeowners that we can pass on to our customers, and influenced our sales and trends.

Follow us on social media: Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook or @DOORCOUK on Instagram.