A furniture company with no marketing whatsoever will almost definitely fail. “Why?” I hear you ask. The simple answer is “because no one will know you”.
In this article we will discuss marketing ideas, identifying your competitors and how to be better than them. Without researching, planning and development, and a comprehensive marketing strategy, your furniture company will be unable to connect to your audience or gain brand recognition.
Create and update your eCommerce website
With today’s digital era, it’s no surprise that any business will need a fully functioning eCommerce website to sell their goods and services online. As technology becomes more advanced, with mobile phones and tablets at people’s fingertips, the eCommerce industry is on the rise. According to Statista, in 2021, approximately 19.5% of global retail sales were made online and with the pandemic in full swing, the figure increased to roughly 18% in 2020 and is expected to continue to rise. In the total retail sales made online in Great Britain in March 2021, 36.7% was by the furniture and household goods sector. This just shows how important it is to have a great eCommerce website.
Keep your content fresh
It is important to keep your content up to date and looking fresh. Not only is it fundamental to keep creating new content and adding products, but it is equally important to keep old content up to date. This could be increasing your selling prices if supplier prices have increased, or bumping up your delivery prices to factor in fuel surcharges from your courier.
Digital merchandising is an extremely valuable tool to any eCommerce business looking to generate successful eCommerce sales. This is the first step into running an eCommerce website and is essentially how you want your online shop to look and what you want your customer to see first. In theory, the products listed at the top of the page are ranked as the company’s best sellers. Merchandising can also be done tactically to push promotions and brands. Different merchandising strategies can be as simple or advanced as you need, but the ultimate objective is to create the best experience for your shopper.
Engage your audience and target your customers
The most significant part of the furniture business is knowing who your target audience is. Identify their location, their age group, and most importantly, you need to be able to reach out to them rather than vice versa. Luxury furniture online retailer Homes Direct 365 said in one of their marketing studies that roughly 74% of their audience are female as per the google analytics statistics. This prompted their marketing team to take a more feminine design with the marketing designs and promos that they use, a good example of why it’s important to know your audience to capture the eye of potential customers with the right kind of brand and marketing.
People like to shop online for convenience and the number one attraction is free delivery. As furniture is usually big and bulky, customers don’t like the hassle of trying to bring home a new table or chair in their small car. To avoid making business at a loss, it is a clever strategy to include the delivery charge into your item selling price, or include free delivery on spending over a certain amount to lure customers into spending more.
Next day delivery
As already mentioned, online shoppers like the convenience and often like their items sent quickly. Offering a Next Day Delivery service will allow the customer to know when their items will be delivered and in most cases, can enjoy tracking the journey of their goods.
Selling furniture is often tricky, as most customers would like to see the actual size of a bed, or want to sit on a sofa before purchasing. Offering an in-store collection service allows your customer to see the product, sit and feel the furniture, speak to a sales advisor and imagine how the furniture will look in their own home setting.
Coupons and discounts
Running promotions or creating discount codes that shoppers can enter at the checkout is a great way to tempt customers to shop with you. Remember, everyone loves a bargain! If you have overstocked an item or a season is due to end, why not create some multibuy or clearance deals?
Plan a thorough marketing strategy for your furniture company
Once you know your audience, you need to know how to reach them. As furniture is made to last quite a few years, your recent customers are most likely not going to make a repeat purchase within the next few months so you constantly need to be engaging new customers.
As the digital age is so prominent, businesses are less likely to take this form of advertising. Traditional advertising includes printed ads and flyers, brochures and catalogues, or audio and visual adverts in the forms of TV and radio. However, it may be sensible to set aside a little budget for these types of advertising as not everyone is online yet and you don’t want to isolate customers in the older generation.
Email marketing is a great tool to reach past and present customers. It’s much more powerful than social media posts as it carries more information and directly reaches your customer’s inbox. Frequent newsletters keep them in the loop of current trends, deals and what you have to offer. A great example of this working in the real world was a campaign done by Stoves N Fitting UK who as the main business supply and fit log burners into homes.
By doing this they have built up a customer base that they know the interests of being that they have a stove, the email campaign was to sell accessories and decorative upgrades for the stove itself and the surround. The customer is warm to the email/company and so more likely to read and follow through with a sale as they would most likely be interested.
With the presence of social media, you can interact with past and potential customers. Similar to email marketing, you can post your latest offers and furniture trends to people who may not have subscribed to your weekly newsletters. The power of sharing social media posts means that you can expand your audience by reaching new customers who have never heard of you before! In recent years, social media has also provided the option to boost a post by paying a small fee. For example, Facebook can boost your brand awareness and give you an advantage over non-paid ads by appearing in more users’ newsfeeds.
Social media influencers are very popular in the furniture market as they can help customers visualise a decorated room and see what products look like in the home before they buy as often online stores only display one product at a time. It also gives the retailer a quick way to get a product in front of 1000’s followers/viewers/customers that are interested in their niche because the influencer’s followers are used to seeing the same kind of content on that influencer’s account. The influencer is often given a product for free so that they promote it, a very lucrative business for a successful influencer.
There are plenty of options when it comes to paid advertising and paying for digital advertising is a cost-effective way to promote your business. Advertising on Google (text ads, smart shopping and display ads), Facebook, Instagram and TikTok are just to name a few. Each platform uses the PPC (pay-per-click) method and since you only pay when you get results from customers clicking on your ad, you can save some money. Results can vary depending on the action of your ad, it can drive them to your website, bring you more leads or increase your online sales.
The ROI (return on investment) can be analysed in the various platforms and you can quickly measure your profit and loss. Since you are in control of your spending, you can start off small and slowly get bigger. It is better to know which ads work for you and which don’t.
Know your competition
In order for your furniture company to really take off, you need to know who your competitors are. These are other businesses that are in the same trade or industry as you and provide a similar service. Who are they? What are they doing or selling that you aren’t? Do they know more about the current trend than you do? These are all key questions that could help you be above them and avoid mistakes when starting your own furniture business.
Why is it important for your furniture company to have a good marketing strategy?
In a nutshell, as we have discovered, a good marketing strategy is key to any successful furniture company. It helps you reach your target audience, connect with them and raises awareness to potential customers who don’t know you. In the long run, it will help your business grow, and without it, your business will be unknown. It is important to remember, having a clear marketing strategy versus a marketing plan with no direction will produce very different results.