Lincat has launched a new website that it believes will revolutionise and streamline the purchasing process for its catering equipment distribution partners.
Dealers will be able to choose and compare equipment, check stock levels, buy online and manage project and sales administration from the website, in what is claimed to be a first for the commercial kitchen sector, and is certainly a first for the Middleby Group, Lincat’s parent company.
Distributors will be given access to a dedicated portal which will allow them to build project baskets, access live stock updates and make swift purchases using a ‘fast order’ function.
Complex shipping arrangements can be accommodated online too, and the portal will enable users to view and duplicate previous orders, check statements, download their own version of the price list with tailored discounts, and view and download invoices, which should make the management of purchases quick and easy.
Items from Lincat’s stockholding of over 3,000 different spare parts can be purchased directly at the click of a button. Parts can be searched for by serial number and stock levels checked, so that accurate choices can be made, and delivery times understood.
The website has been designed to make simple navigation, with a large menu that is aimed at making finding Lincat and FriFri products quick and straightforward.
Detailed information on power supply, size, installation and specification can be accessed easily and is updated in real-time for downloadable spec sheets, whilst a comparison tool allows dealers to compare models instantly. Technical documents, how to guides and building information modelling (BIM) models can be downloaded instantly too.
For complex Panther and FriFri products that are often difficult to specify, the new website is equipped with product configurators. Users can build products tailored specifically for their clients’ needs, using a step-by-step system which should simplify the purchasing process.
Helen Applewhite, marketing manager at Lincat, commented: “Nine to five is something of the past. People want to access information instantly and make purchases 24 hours a day, seven days a week – the catering industry is no exception. The clean, simple design and functionality of our new website reflects this and we’ve incorporated an array of useful tools and features that will make purchases easier for distributors.
“The investment that has been made in our new website represents a huge vote of confidence in Lincat by our parent group, Middleby. It will help us to achieve our ambitious growth targets, give Lincat a unique, competitive edge and place us head and shoulders above the competition. Feedback, from customers, distributors and our internal sales team, has been incredibly positive.”
CESA director Keith Warren has had the site demonstrated to him and added: “Buying foodservice equipment can be complex, given the vast range of products on the market and the many ways individual items can be configured. Initiatives like the new Lincat website are helping the industry address these issues, making product sourcing and specification easier.”
To find out more about the development and features of the new site, look out for an in-depth interview in the March issue of Catering Insight.