Is your furniture store looking for new ways to boost sales? Look no further than your existing furniture customers. Tap into the power of word-of-mouth marketing (WOMM) to get quality referrals, while also marketing to existing customers to attract repeat buyers.
“Existing customers are the lifeline for our business,” says Seth Weisblatt, owner of four Sam’s Furniture & Appliances locations in Texas.
Sam’s Furniture holds special sales throughout the year for current furniture customers. Recently, Sam’s invited its best customers to the store the Sunday before Thanksgiving and offered them Black Friday pricing and a free frozen turkey to say thanks. “It’s always our biggest promotion of the year, and the smile you get from a customer is worth everything,” Weisblatt says. “The gratitude customers feel is very special!”
While it’s common practice for stores to target existing furniture customers with special sales and promos (a great marketing strategy, by the way), is your furniture store also capitalizing on those satisfied customers to attract new furniture customers? Here are five innovative ways furniture stores can generate new sales from existing customers by using the power of word-of-mouth marketing online.
1. Build Relationships with Furniture Customers
The first touchpoint for most furniture customers is your store’s website as they conduct research and search around for the best place to buy furniture.
Provide interactive tools on your website that make furniture shopping more fun and memorable, such as a design-style quiz, scratch-and-save coupon or sofa assessment, instead of a boring static contact-us form where customers simply input their contact information and move on to the next furniture store website.
By engaging furniture customers on your website then providing a seamless experience in your furniture showroom, you create loyal furniture customers who are more likely to share their positive shopping experience.
2. Make It Easy for Furniture Customers to Share Online
Having a comprehensive, cohesive online presence makes it much easier to profit from word-of-mouth marketing given today’s digital world. From an optimized website to social media networking, furniture stores can utilize a variety of online platforms to capture consumers’ attention and give existing furniture customers a way to engage and share positive experiences.
Ed Tashjian, principal of Tashjian Marketing, says furniture brands he works with are starting to realize the power of what he calls a softer digital marketing approach. “Get featured on Houzz or industry blogs,” he says. “Build an identity using digital and social media marketing tools.”
“Build an identity using digital and social media marketing tools.”
— Ed Tashjian
Your furniture store website should automatically prompt online visitors to post pictures of their purchases or share the results of the fun, interactive quiz they just took on your website. Encourage online testimonials, likes on Facebook and other ways to gain exposure to their social network. Use your furniture store’s social media accounts to celebrate existing customers, who are likely to share with family and friends.
3. Create Engaging Content for Furniture Customers
To get furniture customers to share your brand’s story, you first must create content worth sharing. Establish a community with your existing customers by curating engaging content they’re likely to share with their social network, whether it be fun furniture facts posted on Facebook and Twitter or a monthly e-newsletter with store events and promos they can forward to friends.
Highly effective content creates a conversation around your brand. It should also help furniture customers as they do research, such as interactive planning tools and company blogs that highlight current design trends.
PERQ customer Jeff Giagnocavo, co-owner of Automatic Mattress Profits and Gardner’s Mattress & More, says his sales team uses customer data they capture from the website to create an email list for marketing campaigns. Targeting consumers who are currently furniture shopping and have already shown interest by visiting your website is a great tactic for converting sales.
4. Start a Referral Program for Furniture Customers
Reward your current customers for referring friends and family to your store. To do so, you have to engage with the customers to see why they visited the store. Was it a website visit that prompted them to shop in the showroom or did someone they know tell them about your store and service?
Send your existing furniture customers a gift card to a local restaurant or a discount on their next purchase to say thanks for the referral. Show gratitude and you’ve likely earned a long-time, loyal customer.
5. Target Existing Furniture Customers
While it’s great to attract new business through referrals, don’t forget to cater to those furniture customers you’ve already won over. Repeat shoppers can give your store’s profits a real boost.
Tashjian suggests furniture stores build a database of customers to identify their preferred styles and interests, so you can send them customized promos.
“If the database says they’re a suite-type of person, you can tell them when a suite is going out of stock or discounted,” he says. “You’ll know who is predisposed to buy new collections or add-on pieces.”
Create a targeted, customized marketing approach for existing customers.
Using PERQ’s technology, you can gather detailed demographics about your customers as they browse your website and track sales conversion rates to see what’s working and what’s not.
Utilize that customer data to create a targeted, customized marketing approach for existing customers.
Additional Home Furnishings Resources
- How the PERQ CRM software helps improve communication with shoppers.
- Find out how PERQ’s Virtual Consultation Scheduler can help Retailers connect with shoppers.
- Turn your website visitors into in-store traffic with PERQ’s marketing cloud for home furnishings stores.