Practical Ways to Improve Customer Experience in the Showroom

When a customer chooses to visit a physical store, they’re looking for more than a huge selection of merchandise and low prices. They are coming to have a comfortable, personalized experience that will keep them excited about their home improvement projects. Whether they’re in the market for a full remodel or a simple upgrade, they don’t want to be overwhelmed by too many choices. This is especially true for younger homeowners or anyone tackling their first renovation projects.

So how do you break it down? Offer clients a relaxing shopping environment that sparks their imagination by presenting the lifestyle and curating the experience.

Presenting the Lifestyle

Plumbing showroom with colorful mini suites and plumbing fixtures
Render by SH Design-Build

Maximize your mini suites: Even if the space is small, include mini suites in a few different styles, such as traditional, modern, and avant-garde. Research the top kitchen and bath design trends and go from there. Try a bathroom mini suite with a floating vanity, backlit mirror and a smart toilet; or an edgy kitchen display with a copper sink or workstation sink, matte black or nickel fixtures, heightened by some trendy tile. Mini suites are the focal point of the showroom, so be sure to place them in strategic spots near the entrance or in the windows.

Functional displays: Working faucets and shower heads really engage the client. People love demos and it gives them the chance to understand how the products works. That’s always better than bringing something home and finding out you don’t like it! Be sure to include a nice selection of styles, finishes and features. If the faucets on display come in other finishes, be sure to have a tablet or computer on hand to reveal the other options and show product demos.

Be Bold: Don’t be afraid to take chances with color and design: colorful vinyl or wallpaper with unique natural textures, metallic accents on displays and edgy merchandise. Throw in some towels, a statement mirror, and even plants to complete the look. It’s the little details that not only make people feel at home but show them exactly how products look in a lived-in space. In a kitchen display, for example, small appliances and everyday kitchen items like fruit bowls and cookbooks help clients imagine the potential. Kitchen displays can also include high-end countertops in soapstone, solid state materials, concrete or wood (you’ll have the granite and marble samples available too, of course).

Curating the Experience

Decorative plumbing showroom with plumbing fixtures and brick accent wall
Render by SH Design-Build

Show off the best and brightest: Full displays let you showcase design elements and products that clients may not be considering as options. Touchless faucets, smart toilets, digital mirrors, unique storage solutions or high-end European products displayed in a familiar environment invite clients to consider new options for their own homes.

Do your research: The more you know about your target clientele, the easier it will be to attract them to your showroom. Find out more about who is shopping in your showroom and design around their tastes. Trends vary by city, region and population; for example, if your clientele isn't into the latest in European or Japanese design, offer more traditional products. Millennials flocking to the showroom? Don't skimp on the technology. Baby-boomers? Showcase aging-in-place features like zero-threshold showers and grab handles that double as stylish towel holders.

Personalized Service: Personalized experiences drive higher sales: 40 percent of shoppers spend more than they planned when a shopping experience is tailored to them. It’s no wonder. Online retailers immediately present add-ons and new options based on the original search term. The same can be true in a physical store. To get personal, keep track of a client’s order history, especially if they have purchased from you online. Another option is to use design software to show clients what products will look like in their homes.

Creating a Destination

Sink and faucet displays in decorative plumbing showroom
Facets of Austin Showroom

With more people shopping online from the comfort of their couches than ever, it’s important to break down the boundaries between the retail environment and the home. Experience is everything- if there’s no special reason to leave the house, consumers will simply do all their shopping on their computers or phones.

Using these methods in the showroom can tru