How to Sell Material Handling Equipment to a Skeptic

How to Sell Material Handling Equipment to a SkepticOne of the most satisfying experiences that the customer service experts at Douglas Equipment have is convincing a skeptic to try a new piece of material handling equipment – because we know that once they try it, they will be delighted with how well it works!

Many people, when they first encounter the need to move or store items, will not use any material handling equipment at all; or will use equipment that they already have on their premises. For example, they may simply carry boxes back and forth by hand, or if they already have a platform dolly, they may stack boxes on that, and then lean over – at an uncomfortable angle – and push the load where it needs to go.

Even people who need to move a heavy 55-gallon drum for the first time, and many times after, may try to use something conveniently at hand to move it. It may be a while before they realize that investing in a proper 2-wheel drum truck is a wise decision.

Some of our customers come to the realization on their own that buying better material handling equipment makes good sense. Other customers may have had people point out to them that the equipment they are using is not up to the job. By the time they come to us, many are still skeptical about whether buying another piece of equipment is the right thing to do.

And that’s where we come in. We can quickly suggest what type of material handling equipment a customer needs with regard to their day-to-day procedures. Our next step is usually to explain, and sometimes demonstrate the best options that will improve their operations.

In the following sections, we will give three examples of this process. We see each of these situations, and many more, very frequently. We know that in all of them, even the most skeptical person can quickly become firm believers.

From Hand Truck to Appliance Truck

For many people, the 2-wheel hand truck is the first piece of material handling equipment they own – and it’s a good one! It has a nose plate, a tall handle, and two wheels. Using it is a breeze: slide the nose plate under the load, tilt the handle back and balance the truck over the two wheels, and roll away the load.

As good as it is, that first-hand truck may not be suited for all loads. For example, if you try to move a refrigerator with a basic hand truck, you’ll find that it’s difficult to slide the nose plate all the way under the refrigerator. It’s hard to keep the refrigerator in contact with the handle when you tip the handle back; the hand truck wheels may be too close together for stability, and the frame of the hand truck may scratch the appliance.

We like to point out to customers that an alternative solution exists – it’s called an appliance truck, and it solves all the problems listed above. Its nose plate is only a few inches from front to back, and is easy to slide under an appliance. One or more belts are attached to the handle, and can wrap around the appliance, securing it to the handle. Appliance truck wheels are further apart, which provides stability when moving large appliances. And finally, the appliance truck is padded, which protects appliance surfaces.

From Manual Pallet Truck to Powered Pallet Truck

Most of our customers who use pallets quickly learned that a pallet truck (also known as a pallet jack) is essential. The user slides the pallet truck’s two forks under a pallet, pumps its handle up and down to elevate the load a few inches, and pushes or pulls the pallet truck and the loaded pallet to its destination.

Some customers who acquired a pallet truck may have only used it a few times each day. If their operations increase, they’ll be using it constantly all day long. They might feel limited with the time it takes to pump the handle, and the physical strain it takes to move the load.

With these customers, we like to explain that many different powered pallet trucks are available. The simplest use electrical power to elevate the load, but are still moved by hand. Walkie models not only elevate the load, they also use electrical power to move the load. Stacker models will elevate the load, move it to its destination, and then raise it up to a shelf for storage.

From Platform Dolly to Drum Truck

We’ve had many customers who started a small business, and soon acquired a platform dolly – a small deck mounted on four wheels. As their business expanded, they began to move drums full of liquids or small parts. For a time they may have tried to use their platform dolly to move the drums.

Without exception, these customers were always delighted to learn about drum trucks – especially designed hand trucks created specifically to handle 30, 55 or 85-gallon drums. With these drum trucks, it’s easy to grip, lift it off the ground, and wheel it away. The only regret these once skeptical customers may have had is that they didn’t get a drum truck sooner!

The Best Advice for Skeptics? – Contact Douglas Equipment Today!

If someone you know is struggling to move or store items, but seems doubtful about buying equipment that could help, we ask that you give them a hand. No, not literally help them with their lifting! Just suggest that they contact Douglas Equipment. Our customer service representatives are experts at suggesting exactly the right piece of material handling equipment that will make the job much easier.

Our staff can be contacted by phone at 800-451-0030, or 305-888-3700 in the Miami area. We can also be reached using our online contact form. We look forward to helping you out soon!