Lith-Tech

LITH-TECH Mobility, a folding electric wheelchair specialist, is a growing competitor in the space which recently hit its 2,000th wheelchair sale.

Toby St George, Founder and CEO of LITH-TECH, discusses his business and why, he feels, caring for the customer, both before and after the sale of a wheelchair, is so important.

What made you want to start LITH-TECH Mobility?

As a serial entrepreneur, I’ve owned many businesses in different industries, and providing different services. I was increasingly unhappy with the industry my last business was in, and knew I wanted, and needed, to make a change.

“I grew up with a grandmother who had severe mobility issues, and had parents ingrained in me the values of caring for others and providing equal opportunities, and I knew I wanted to work in an industry that gave people back their freedom.

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“So, back in 2017, I started as a mobility retailer. And then, in 2018, we specialised in folding electric wheelchairs and haven’t looked back since.”

How did the pandemic and lockdowns affect the customer care you were able to give?

“When the pandemic hit, our core customer base, those with lifelong disabilities, the elderly or people with chronic illness, were advised to shield. This meant our normal way of providing customer demonstrations, where we spend an hour with each customer to understand their needs and teach them how to use their new wheelchair best, could no longer happen.

“Instead, we started to make videos about each of our chairs, how to use them and how carers and loved ones could also help with their new LITH-TECH wheelchair. While we’d always innovated as a company, and used YouTube and video prior to lockdowns, however we created even more videos, almost on a weekly basis, during the lockdown period.

“Our videos cover absolutely everything that we would go through in person and give users a library of knowledge to look at and go back too, even after the purchase. Through a combination of our telephone and video consultations and with the help of all our video demonstrations we have on the web, LITH-TECH continued to grow and serve our customers throughout the whole pandemic.”

Why do you think that extensive customer care prior to a purchase is so important?

“An electric folding wheelchair is often the most important, and expensive, purchase someone will make as it helps give them back their freedom. For such a critical purchase, it is crucial to not only pick the perfect chair but to choose the right company to help assist with your whole purchasing process.

“When someone is initially starting their journey into the world of folding electric wheelchairs it can seem daunting. Whether someone heads into a mobility shop, or looks to the internet, there is so much information out there and so many different choices and companies out there.

“At LITH-TECH, we always encourage potential customers to give us a ring, so we can book in a video call, as we can use our website, videos and core questions to both qualify them and help them find the best wheelchair for their needs.

“It also means that, if necessary, we can advise them that we don’t have the best option for them and point them in the direction of a company that can help. We would much rather do this than sell someone something that’s not going to be suitable.”

You mentioned about customer demonstrations, can you explain a bit more about these?

Since we began back in 2017, although most of our business is done online or over the phone, we’ve always preferred to do customer demonstrations, as it gives someone the chance to come and meet us in-person, try out some of the chairs, and see our premises.

“As an online retailer, buying a wheelchair without seeing it or trying it can be intimidating, so we’ve always encouraged people to come to us before buying online through us, and correctly find them an electric wheelchair that fits. This gives them a chance to talk to us about their needs, and we can help them to try a few of our demo chairs.

“By coming in it not only gives us the chance to explain about all the features on the chair, but we can also give someone all the tips and tricks of how to use their new wheelchair correctly. We go through everything from folding & unfolding, to tackling tricky cambers, how to climb curbs and the different ways to getting their wheelchair in and out of the car.

“We only run one demonstration a time, and always qualify someone over the phone first. Not only does this allow us to give a person our undivided attention, and dedicate an entire morning or afternoon to them, it also means they leave a more satisfied and prepared customer. We only run two demonstrations a day, which means no one is rushed for time and they can feel confident in the choices they make.”

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