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15 January, 2023

If the only thing stopping PVC-U installers from adding aluminium to their product portfolio and giving themselves a fighting chance against the current market downturn is the fact that it feels too disruptive to their existing business, then I would say they are talking to the wrong supplier.

We’ve had lots of new enquiries over recent months from PVC-U companies who have recognised that they need to start targeting the higher end of the market where buyers are more cushioned against the cost-of-living crisis, but who definitely don’t want the hassle that installers normally associate with buying and installing in aluminium.

One of the main reasons why they tell me they have started buying from AluFold Direct is because the whole experience we are offering in aluminium so closely mirrors what they are used to in PVC-U.

For instance, we use the same pricing and ordering software that many installers use for PVC-U so they can price jobs themselves instantly online and convert them straight to orders. And, once the orders have been checked by us, they go direct to our factory, saving valuable time and avoiding mistakes. We also offer guaranteed product lead times of 7-14 days depending on whether frames are glazed or unglazed, and we offer windows, bi-folds, sliders and roof lanterns at a range of price points so that they can win business with strong margins.

Crucially, we’ve also got a huge factory with plenty of scalable capacity so we can take on new customers and help them to grow. Key to that is our large stockholding, which buffers our customers against all the usual challenges in the supply chain in a way that smaller, local aluminium suppliers with less space and fewer resources just can’t match.

Since I joined AluFold Direct in 2020, our aim has been to give traditional PVC-U buyers the same level of convenience and efficiency in aluminium that they can already get in PVC-U, ensuring that they can easily run the two options side by side, and I am confident that we are now delivering that.

There’s a reassuring familiarity for PVC-U installers in how we operate – and for those who are already buying aluminium from elsewhere probably a refreshing focus on making life easy for our customers. With AluFold Direct, there is no waiting for your aluminium supplier to price every job for you, no weeks of waiting for your delivery, and no questions about quality or consistency. We have teams of customer service advisors on the phone to help everyone get started and an impressive package of installer support right across sales, marketing and training.

As the PVC-U market becomes increasingly price sensitive and margins start to be hit, the answer for installers who find themselves under pressure is to look at new opportunities with higher-end products where revenues are bigger, and margins are more sustainable. A recession doesn’t have to mean all bad news. With the right supply partner, it could even be just the opportunity installers need to aim higher for their businesses and make the leap into aluminium they have long been considering.

All the details on our products and package of support are at:

By Russell Yates, Managing Director, AluFold Direct