F&P has revealed the results of its latest research project, which set out to explore the attitudes of customers towards doing business and purchasing products online.

Having experienced a steady increase in the number of orders being placed via its website since launching a new internet-based trading facility in late 2014, one of the stand out findings for F&P at the start of this year was that over 70% of merchants and retailers now say they feel confident placing an order for stock online, as opposed to by fax, email or over the telephone.

When asked about what would encourage them to do business via the F&P website more often, almost 60% of those surveyed said that ‘online only’ deals would be most likely to inspire them to continue trading this way on a regular basis.

As well as wanting greater access to product exclusives, feedback also suggested that merchants and retailers are keen to use online trading facilities to check stock availability after hours or while customers are waiting in the branch or showroom. In response, F&P has introduced a ‘stock delivery day’ function to its website to help satisfy this requirement and improve functionality.

Gareth Osborne, head of marketing at F&P said: “Listening to the views of our customers is without a doubt the best way to ensure the trading facility on our website ticks all the boxes for busy merchants, bathroom and fire retailers. On the whole, our research findings appear to be indicative of the way in which merchant and retail businesses across the heating, plumbing and bathroom sectors are now embracing the internet. When time is money, being able to check stock delivery day and order products at their convenience, in just a few clicks, definitely has its advantages.”