Zucora launches Smarter Living
LONDON, Ontario – Added-value resource Zucora Home intends to shake-up the extended warranty and service category with a new program designed to cover not just a single product, whether it be a sofa or a refrigerator, but the furnishings of an entire home plus its heating, air conditioning and plumbing systems.
Called Smarter Living, the program was rolled out to retailers at the recently closed Canadian Furniture Show.
In a statement, Zucora said the key drivers behind the program was to find an innovative way to protect household budgets while delivering maximum convenience for consumers.
“In addition to our traditional, single-product protection plans, Smarter Living now offers expanded coverage for almost all major home products that are likely to fail or eventually will wear out,” Zucora Home president and chief executive officer Brad Geddes explained, adding Smarter Living plans include coverage of costs for parts, labour and replacement of items found in most households.
“By converting their product protection plan into an upgraded Smarter Living program, consumers can now obtain coverage that traditional programs simply don’t provide. Smarter Living includes such things as wear and tear, pet damage and product failure – with an easy way to replace their home furnishings and appliances when they eventually reach their end-of-life,” said Geddes.
One reason for retailers to sign on to the program are the steps it takes to help retain customers at little or no cost. “It’s really very simple,” Geddes said. “When a home furnishing item or major appliance product cannot be repaired and requires replacement, a Smarter Living plan provides valuable incentives for customers to return to our retail partners to purchase new merchandise.”
Geddes told HGO when an item covered under the program needs to be replaces, the customer will receive a gift card representing the value of the item, which can be redeemed at a Smarter Living retailer. “This will create a ‘customer for life’ as they will return to the retailer for their next purchase,” he said.
Customers will also receive reward points after paying their plan’s monthly fee (which ranges from $30 to $70). When enough points are accumulated, they will receive a gift card that can be used in a Smarter Living retailer’s store.
The program will offer consumers at least three levels of coverage: one for furniture; one for appliances; and, one for home systems such as heating and air conditioning. Combination plans will also be offered – such a furniture and appliances; appliances and home systems or all three.
“Consumers no longer need to fear the high cost of repairing or replacing a furniture product, major appliance, or home system when it fails, malfunctions or simply wears out,” said Geddes.
Purchasing a Smarter Living plan will also give the consumer preferred pricing for Zucora Home’s stable of home living items, such as the ZU Collection of household cleaning products or its PureCare line of mattress protectors and linen.
Geddes noted signing on to Smarter Living will bring to the retailer a new revenue stream that will transform the one-time product protection sale into a service plan capable to generate five times more net revenue. “And Zucora Home does all of the work of contacting the customer and upgrading expired protection plans,” he said. “The retailer has no risk and earns commission with each member (consumer) who originally purchased a product protection plan.”
The program is featuring on the company’s recently redesigned web site at zucorahome.com.