Almost all products can now be shipped directly to customers
This morning, Friday 5th April 2019, STIHL has informed its dealers of a number of significant changes and announced plans for a new STIHL Approved Dealer contract.
In an official statement released to dealers, the company say these changes have been brought about by “a huge surge in customers’ appetites for online shopping and more recently, STIHL’s merger of its VIKING and STIHL businesses” – this they say, “now requires the introduction of a new dealer contract.”
The headline change in the contract, as defined in the official statement is, that with immediate effect, all STIHL products – with the exception of chainsaws and spare parts – can be shipped direct to the end customer.
The statement said, “Customers must continue to be offered the option of advice and instruction however online methods, such as videos or web chats, can now be used for this purpose as well as face-to-face instruction.
“All products – except those prohibited for shipping – may now be dispatched in their original packaging and unassembled.
“All chainsaws and spares parts must continue to be personally handed to the customer.”
The official statement also laid out the company’s revised policy for battery and electric powered products. This read, “Battery and electric-powered products can be sold in store, in their original packaging. However dealers must still provide the option of product assembly.
“Petrol products must still be assembled and tested before being handed over to the customer in a ready-to-use condition.
“Chainsaws, irrespective of power source, still need to be assembled and tested before sale.
“These changes apply with immediate effect and can be implemented by STIHL Approved Dealers before signing a new dealer contract.
“A third-party platform ban continues to apply which means that products cannot be sold on sites such as Amazon, eBay or any other third party marketplace website.”
The statement also addressed the recent transfer of the Viking product lines to the STIHL brand, saying dealers will be asked to discontinue using the Viking brand. The company say they are “actively supporting its dealers to remove Viking branding from their stores.”
The statement also said the company would be “working with its Approved Dealers to achieve a higher standard of service across the sub-dealer network.”
Speaking about these changes, STIHL Great Britain’s managing director Robin Lennie said, “STIHL has had a hugely successful partnership with our dealers for over 90 years. Although more items are being sold online, the vast majority of STIHL products are still sold in store and this will continue to be the case for years to come.
“STIHL remains absolutely committed to the STIHL Approved Dealer Network and we will continue our programme of dealership development to improve the physical shopping experience. We will also be enhancing our training programme with webinars and marketing courses to help STIHL Approved Dealers to increase their ability to sell online.”