Interior Design Sales Funnel

Image of interior design sales funnel

An interior design sales funnel is a visual representation of the purchasing journey your clients take. That’s to say, what your clients learn, and the decisions they make, which leads them to your design firm’s products and services. Do you need to attract new clients? Or take your design practice in a new direction? Then understanding your sales funnel is crucial to your marketing strategy. And for the success of your interior design firm

The Interior Design Sales Funnel Explained

The sales funnel consists of 3 phases:

  • Awareness: of a problem, need or want. When the client notices something. Observes the first signs
  • Discovery: thinks about ways to solve the problem, satisfy the need or want. The stage when the client starts thinking about what they can do
  • Action: take steps to solve the problem, satisfy the need or want. Put simply, purchase or not

Look at the picture at the top of this business success blog. Do you notice how the action end of the sales funnel is much, much narrower than the top? We’ll come back to this

How an Interior Design Firm Can Make Use of a Sales Funnel

For this explanation, I’m going to use a specific interior design firm example, bathroom interiors

The person visiting your showroom or website is in the final phase of their journey to a new bathroom. Great news, they’ve got you in mind! All you’ve got to do now is convince them your designs are what they want. More than what other interior designers have to offer. Or interior architecture practices. And what DIY stores can provide. Oh, and don’t forget Ikea………

So you could have a lot of competition. This means your sales and marketing has to be more compelling than your competitors. To persuade that person, at the end of their purchasing journey, to buy your product or service. This means going toe-to-toe with your competitors. Swinging a ‘luxurious materials’ uppercut, dodging an ‘affordable price’ jab

If you concentrate your marketing efforts on the action phase, you compete for a very small prize. Using e-commerce as a guide, that prize is a mere 3% of your potential client base. Therefore, the vast majority of your potential clients, the 97%, are in the other parts of the sales funnel. So how do you win the bigger prize?

Win a Bigger Prize with an Interior Design Sales Funnel

To reach the remaining 97% of your potential clients you need to do one thing. Educate. Provide your potential clients with knowledge. Knowledge that not only benefits them but also leads them through the sales funnel. And on to buy your interior design products and services

Those at the top of the sales funnel need different information from those in the middle of the sales funnel. Therefore, you need to educate those in the awareness phase in a different way to those in the discovery phase. Those at the top of the sales funnel often don’t realise they have a problem, need, or want. Similarly, those in the discovery phase won’t realise it’s your services that will solve their problem. And satisfy their need or want

Back to the Top of the Sales Funnel

The awareness phase of the sales funnel. Let’s take a situation that those of us in the UK face for months every year. Winter. And the long nights and endless drizzle means winter can be bleak. In short, we’re less likely to be happy in winter than at any other time of year

A successful marketing strategy will tap into these feelings and educate. Of course, people already know it’s winter, and that it’s not the most fun time of year. But what they won’t necessarily realise is the problems winter presents them with. Or what winter makes them need and want:

  • Problem: The short days, long nights, can mean people can struggle with motivation
  • Need: Something to look forward to
  • Want: To get away from the rubbish weather

People may not know they’re struggling with motivation during winter. And that they’re in need of something to look forward to. Or they want to get away from the Great British weather. We can make them aware of what they’re facing, and provide a way out:

  • Discover how a cosy bathroom from Lather in Luxury gets you ready for a cold winter’s morning
  • Time for something to look forward to? Then book a bathroom makeover with Lucious Loos Limited
  • Escape the winter weather, without leaving the comfort of your own home. And relax in a beautiful bath from Terrific Tubs

Yes, I have deliberately used overt, and slightly fun, language. But only to make the point: educate people, so they realise they have a problem, a need, or a want. And then provide them with the solution

And on to the Middle

The discovery phase. At this stage, the client knows she or he has a problem. Or has identified a need or a want:

  • Problem: a dripping tap
  • Need: replace that old, noisy cistern
  • Want: wouldn’t it be nice if the bathroom taps matched the door handles

The client with this problem, need or want may think, ‘I need a plumber’. And this is our opportunity to present alternatives to that first, obvious thought:

  • Is that dripping tap telling you it’s time for a new bathroom? Call Sensational Sinks and Showers for a free consultation
  • Need your old, noisy cistern replaced? Why stop there? Get a new-look bathroom from Divine Dunny Designs
  • Embarrassed by your mismatched taps and door handles? Best Bathroom Brothers will give you a bathroom you can be proud of

This time our marketing educates the client as to the existence of alternatives to the obvious or go-to answers. And those alternatives are our beautiful designs

A Sales Funnel is Crucial for Interior Design Business Success

The sales funnel consists of 3 phases: awareness, discovery and action. Interior designers can too often focus their marketing on the action phase. Where only 3% of their potential clients are. Savvy interior designers can educate their potential clients as to what their problems, needs and wants are. And present their design services as an alternative to the ‘obvious’ solutions. Not only does this give us access to 30x more potential clients. Also, we have a more imaginative marketing message than ‘Better Bathrooms than B&Q’

Next month’s business success blog discusses what we need to think about when naming our interior design firm. And there’s much more to it than you first think! Make sure you don’t miss it. And subscribe to have the business success blog delivered straight to you

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