While this basically applies to most, if not all industries, furniture stores can benefit significantly from having a strong online presence. Just like purchasing a car from a dealership, furniture shopping is a big deal and a long process. Both industries require a large investment of time and money from the consumer — which means research (and patience) is of the utmost importance. Where do you think a number of those consumers are doing all of their research? They’re doing it online! That’s why you most focus on a premium furniture website personalization experience to convert online visitors into in-store sales.
Although there are still a number of furniture store owners who are primarily focused on the in-store experience, there are an increasing number of furniture stores that have begun leveraging the power of their online consumer base to capture leads and attention spans.
Regardless of whether or not your furniture store has a website (and chances are, it does), how would you go about gauging the quality of engagement on that website? Would you say that your consumer base is proactively responding to different experiences and forms on your website? If you can’t answer these questions (or you know for sure that your furniture website doesn’t get engagement), it might be time to re-evaluate some of your marketing priorities.
Just like the automotive industry, competition has become incredibly fierce — and for the most part, it’s due to increased online presences among brands. Not only are there more people conducting research online, but those consumers are looking at several different websites: review websites, social media sites, and of course, competitor websites. And really, who can blame them? There are so many things to research: inventory, furniture brands, financing, special offers, and so on.
One of the biggest favors you can do for your furniture store is to create a personalized furniture website experience that stands out from its competitors. But the biggest question that’s probably on your mind is “How do I even get started?”
Before you immediately jump ahead to the “how do I do this?” question, there are a few preliminary questions that we always ask furniture stores to ask themselves: “What makes your showroom different than the competition?” and “What do you do in your showroom to improve and personalize the customer experience that makes people want to buy?”
Now comes the fun part: ask yourself those questions. Think about how you can apply those same principles to your website. The experience on your website should emulate that of someone entering your showroom. That is the key to engaging visitors online to get them into the store.
Setting up all of your inventory on the showroom floor and ensuring it looks presentable is completely expected. But what about setting up that enticing experience on your website? What are you doing to compel a future buyer to visit your showroom after looking at a sofa on your website at 9 p.m. the prior evening?
When it comes to creating a great website experience for furniture shoppers, you need to do more than just throw an inventory list on your website.
When it comes to creating a great website experience for furniture shoppers, you need to do more than just throw an inventory list on your website. Again, the experience needs to emulate that of a personalized in-store experience, so consumer need to have a clear idea of what the furniture looks like and to some degree, feels like.
When listing your inventory, make sure that all the photos are up-to-date and that you’re advertising current promotions. In addition to photos and promotions, make sure all the descriptions are up-to-date. You wouldn’t have information in your showroom that is out of date, right? Of course not! That’s why it is so critical for the furniture website personalization to match that of your showroom.
Naturally, most furniture companies don’t have the luxury of an entire in-house team dedicated to your website. And even if you do have a team, they’re focused solely on maintenance. That being said, it might be a good idea to partner with software providers to help you take your furniture website personalization to the next level. With the help of a third-party provider, you can integrate calculators, quizzes and evaluation experiences that assist consumers with their research and push them down the purchasing funnel to lea them into your showroom.
In order to ensure that your furniture store’s website stands out from the competition, you need to make sure that the consumer experience matches the showroom experience to the umpteenth degree. Even though it might require a bit of research on your behalf, the engagement and conversions you’ll see after website improvements will be completely worth it.