By BUILDING PRODUCTS Magazine Staff
Showcasing everything from shiny stainless steel appliances to rich cherry cabinetry, many kitchen product manufacturer Web sites don?t have a lot to offer contractors. Most kitchen product sites are geared toward consumers and don?t offer special sections for builders and remodelers.
Nevertheless, the favorite sites in this category offer a whole lot more substance. They?re well-organized and many supply detailed specifications and quick-loading photos. GE Appliances, Kenmore, KraftMaid, Maytag, and Whirlpool have the most extensive specs, although none in this category provide detailed installation information.
Favorite Kitchen Product Sites
|GE Appliances||N||Y||N||Y||Y||3||2||3||2||3||Extensive specs; easy to navigate; can search by brand collections or by appliance type; can buy products and parts online.|
|Kenmore||N||Y||N||Y||Y||3||1||3||3||3||Detailed specs, but hard to find; can search by category or by brand; sells Kenmore and other brands online; can check status of order.|
|KraftMaid||N||Y||N||N||N||3||1||3||3||3||Detailed dimensional specs; easy to navigate; helpful toolbar on every page; can see finishes on door styles; dealer locator hard to find.|
|Maytag||N||Y||N||Y||N||3||2||3||2||3||User friendly; easy to navigate; useful specs; can?t purchase directly at this site, but e-commerce links send you to nearest retailer?s Web site.|
|Merillat||N||N||N||N||N||2||3||3||2||3||Well organized by product style and line; useful toolbar on every page; includes PDF files for specs and installation info.|
|Sub-Zero||N||N||N||N||N||2||1||3||2||3||Well organized; helpful toolbar, but it continuously moves across bottom of pages; drawings for some models.|
|Whirlpool||Y||N||N||Y||N||3||1||3||2||3||Extensive specs; well organized; easy to navigate; can compare two products side by side; can purchase accessories online.|
As compared with the other favorite sites. 1=below average; 2=average; 3=above average; N=no; Y=yes
[This article is a reprint from BUILDING PRODUCTS Magazine, November/December 2001 issue.]