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Article: Why You Sell More Using A 3D Room Planner

Furniture World News Desk on 8/5/2015

by Lisbet Hansen, Marketing & Customer Success Manager, Cylindo

Anyone who has ever sold furniture knows it can be difficult to give useful advice to customers if you do not know what their homes look like.

Not knowing the size and look of the room are barriers to delivering exceptional sales service. The right furniture for the right space is important for most customers. Veteran industry consultant Joe Capillo says, “Simply knowing and showing technical things about construction, materials, fabrics, color, pricing, delivery – won’t get you connected to the one thing you know nothing about: the room!”

To deliver an experience that is all about "her", you must understand the look and feel she wants to create, the colors she is working with and what signals she wants to send to people entering her home. Remember, she is not just buying furniture, she is creating a home.

Maximizing The Sale

Not knowing about a customer's room also limits the sales associate’s ability to maximize the sale because he or she has no idea if the space available is fully utilized. Perhaps the space can accommodate an extra armchair, lamps or wall art, providing a better look for the customer while increasing the sale.

Great retail salespeople have always used room sketches and top down room planners. When I was selling furniture, that's what I did. Today I help furniture retailers deliver better sales experiences using interactive visualization software.

Create A Better Sales Experience For Customers

Whether you choose our room planning software or buy from another company, there is only upside to doing it, and doing it soon. I am, as you might suspect, partial to the software we (Cylindo) produces called the "Room Planner". For those of you who don't have experience with this type of software, you will be surprised by how easily it lets you create realistic 3D environments. Ours also inserts 3D model replications of the furniture you stock into the room layouts you create for customers.

Let me give you an idea of what I am talking about using images from our Room Planner. This picture (below) was created in one of our client’s Room Planner.

What you see is a representation of a living room outfitted with the client ’s own products. Customers walk the store with a sales associate who uses the Room Planner on an iPad. They are able to try out different furniture items to get a good idea of what works and what doesn’t.

This adds an interesting dimension to the sales process because both customer and sales associate know the space they are working with. The sales associate is in a better position to give advice and optimize the sale. For example, the customer’s first interest might only have been to purchase a sofa, but a clever sales associate will quickly suggest adding the coffee table and the armchair, because he or she can see that it both fits the space and other decor. Increasing your sales numbers this way is much easier.

The Room Planner lets you view the room both in 2D, 3D and Free Walk (see views above) - which is like a person’s own point of view, as if you were walking around in your own 3D home. So there are plenty of opportunities to ensure the overall design is correct.

Help With Be-Backs

Be-backs are a fact of life when you sell furniture which makes building relationships by staying in touch with your customers all the more important. Here the Room Planner is a handy helper as well. You can save designs and mail them to customers. A link from the email lets them open the Room Planner so they can review and make changes from their home. That way you stay top-of-mind with them.

Imagine an item was out of stock when the customer was in your store, but 3 days later it came back in. You insert the item into the design and send it to the customer so they can see what it looks like. Now that is valuable customer contact!

Selling furniture is fun, but it is not always easy. Today there are tools available that add to the fun and make it easier. If you are a furniture retailer and you would like to receive more information, I will be thrilled to help you. You are welcome to contact me by email at lisbet@cylindo.com.

About Cylindo: Cylindo is a specialist provider of digital visualization solutions dedicated to serving the furniture industry. We help furniture retailers and manufacturers take maximum advantage of today’s most advanced technologies that translate directly into increased sales and enhanced brand image. For more information please visit: http://www.cylindo.com or call 415 527 0895