Bradford White Corp., a manufacturer of residential water heating and storage equipment worldwide, and ServiceWhale, an online marketplace with instant quotes on major home improvement projects, recently unveiled a joint online solution that will make Bradford White the first major manufacturer in the space to make ServiceWhale’s instant quoting technology available through its online contractor directory.

The partnership allows Bradford White installing contractors to deliver real, custom quotes to homeowners shopping for water heater replacements automatically online. This collaboration acknowledges evolving consumer behaviors and that manufacturers, like Bradford White, are expanding the ways they can help their professional contracting customers better cater to their own online-savvy customers who need plumbing/HVAC services.

Many manufacturers of home improvement equipment still use outdated directories on their websites to help consumers who are interested in buying and installing their products find local contractors to take on their projects. These directories offer little to differentiate themselves from the countless online directories available or even more simply, local web searches.

In addition to making their online quoting platform available, ServiceWhale has rebuilt Bradford White Water Heaters’ contractor directory from the ground up. Within the new Bradford White Contractor Directory solution, each contractor has been given a brand-new profile free of charge, where they can showcase reviews through Google and Yelp integration.  Additionally, contractors can show personal and company information, photos of previous projects, and industry certifications.

Contractors who agree to license ServiceWhale’s quoting technology as a part of a paid Advanced Profile will also have access to several lead generation tools for online communication with homeowners. Furthermore, ServiceWhale will grant rights to those contractors to implement the quoting platform into their own native websites.

In offering this solution, Bradford White is seeking to improve the overall customer experience for both homeowners and plumbing contractors wishing to transact online for standard water heater replacements.

ServiceWhale’s consumer-facing quoting technology allows homeowners to answer a few simple questions about their water heater replacement and get real, custom quotes from the contractors of their choice instantly — without the need for an onsite visit or a phone call. Contractors benefit by greatly reducing the amount of time and money it takes to generate a quote and sell a water heater replacement in a traditional face-to-face interaction for standard projects. In fact, the ServiceWhale quoting technology that’s available through Advanced Profile helps expedite the process of getting firm quotes from about 30 hours to two minutes.

“Our professional contractor customers are starting to look more and more toward the manufacturers they support to help them grow their businesses, especially in ways that address how the consumer shopping experience is evolving," Bradford White Director of Marketing Carl Pinto said. "The Bradford White contractors who were part of the research in developing this new directory, have helped us shape what amounts to a semi-custom marketing solution and customer contact portal that reflects the unique aspects of a participating contractor’s business. Any Bradford White contractor who has not yet updated their standard free profile in the new directory is encouraged to do so and can call 866-977-3897 for assistance in this process.”

“We started ServiceWhale to seamlessly connect homeowners and contractors on our platform, to save each homeowner many hours and thousands of dollars spent on an average project," ServiceWhale founder Dmitri Saveliev said. "Now, with our partnership with Bradford White, this is a great opportunity to deliver this same experience to Bradford White contractors and their customers.”