By creating a connected online experience, retailers can attract valuable consumers during the research phase and convert them into in-store purchases. Develop a sales conversion funnel for furniture customers who first shop online.
For the majority of furniture shoppers who browse around online, their goal is to narrow their selections before ever having to step foot into a store. For furniture stores, the goal is to get the furniture customer into the store to make a purchase. Every time a furniture customer visits your website, it’s important to help move them closer to a purchase through the sales conversion funnel.
Shopper Amanda Bell browsed several high-end national furniture retailer websites before she and her husband, Evan, decided on the style of sofa they wanted. Working on a limited budget, Bell then searched furniture stores in the Indianapolis area to find the perfect couch and loveseat to buy for their home.
“I think retailers need to do a much better job of creating a personal relationship with their customer.”
-Brad Huisken, Founder of IAS Training
While researching furniture on one local furniture retailer’s website, Bell took advantage of several interactive tools. She says she first narrowed down the color and fabric she wanted with software that previewed hundreds of options, and then utilized a personalized room planner to make sure the furniture fit her oddly shaped living room.
“I made the mistake of buying furniture that was too big for our last living room, so this helped us to avoid making the same mistake,” Bell says. “The cool ‘try-on’ interactive features were helpful to me. It gave me more confidence in my color selections and that they’d actually match.”
To create a successful conversion funnel for furniture customers, a store’s website must encompass multiple shopper touchpoints that present a connected, personalized experience. By improving engagement with each potential customer, a retailer can also improve sales and develop a brand reputation that leaves a lasting impression.
“I think retailers need to do a much better job of creating a personal relationship with their customer,” says Brad Huisken, an expert in retail sales and management and founder of IAS Training, which offers in-house sales training and consulting.
He recently spoke at a Home Furnishings Association seminar in Las Vegas. “Furniture is an emotionally driven industry, and salespeople tend to focus more on the furniture than on the excitement of a new home, a remodel or redesign.”
Yes, an online inventory and listing of available brands is important because it tells shoppers what you offer and helps them find you, but it’s the personalized presentation on your website that draws consumers in and inspires them to visit your showroom.
Build a Conversion Funnel for Furniture and Mattress Customers
So what does an online sales conversion funnel look like for furniture companies? Shaped like an inverted pyramid that narrows to the point of conversion, it’s a useful way to usher potential customers through a retailer’s sales process and help a furniture sales team visualize the store’s sales process.
At the top of the funnel, it’s all about attracting as many consumers as possible to your website and furniture store. That means using great keywords and product descriptions to increase your search engine results, posting on social media and publishing supplemental content, as well as welcoming new customers that land on your site.
To draw online furniture customers further down the buying funnel, offer a design style quiz to help them narrow their furniture choices. Once you know what a particular consumer is looking for, serve up customized scratch-and-save promos for what they’re specifically interested in buying.
Ideally, the middle of the funnel consists of interactive tools that assist consumers in their online research process and gives them pertinent information based on what kind of mattress, sofa or chair they like best.
At PERQ, we like gathering this information in the form of assessments that allow online shoppers to answer questions, which help the customer while also giving retailers the details about that shopper’s preferences.
“To draw online furniture customers further down the buying funnel, offer a design style quiz to help them narrow their furniture choices.”
“With online engagement, the retailer can get in the home without physically getting in the home,” Huisken says. “People can visually see the outcome prior to the purchase — making a more personalized presentation.”
After assessing a consumer’s preferences, present various ways they can request more information or submit questions, whether in the form of an online chat feature or a design consultation scheduling tool.
Your sales conversion funnel finally narrows down to customers ready to buy, so it’s a great place in the process to add financing calculators and customized, timely promotions that encourage the consumer to visit your showroom and purchase the furniture they’ve been eyeing online.
Connected Online Experiences Are Key To Conversion Funnel Success
While implementing interactive tools on your furniture store website is an excellent way to attract customers, connectivity of those online features is the real key to success, and ultimately, conversion.
Online furniture shoppers can bounce between hundreds of sites, perusing inspirational pictures and utilizing the various planning tools offered on all kinds of websites.
Give potential customers a reason to stick on your website by using software that tracks consumers’ information and remembers them each time they visit, delivering a connected online experience that’s both personal and effective for driving them from the research phase into the showroom.
Additional Home Furnishings Resources
- This is what you can do leverage your website to help the consumer decide to purchase in-store.
- When considering your digital sales process, here are 5 tips to keep in mind.
- Turn your website visitors into in-store traffic with PERQ’s marketing cloud for home furnishings stores.