Proper Showroom Management Viewed as Key to
Whether in the process of designing a new showroom or revamping
your current showroom, special care should be taken to plan for as
many efficiencies and time-saving methods as possible. I would like
to discuss some showroom strategies that have enabled our kitchen
and bath dealership to become more profitable, efficient and
knowledgeable regarding our clientele.
Your showroom is a representation of your company’s image and
professionalism, and, in many cases, may be the first opportunity
you will have to meet, impress and visit with your future clients.
Whether your showroom is 10,000 square feet or 1,000 square feet,
some fundamental principles apply to all and everything
Having been fortunate enough to visit many showrooms across the
U.S. and Canada, I would say that the absolute worst showroom
experience for a potential client is visiting a showroom that is
not well kept and has displays that are incomplete or dated. From a
sales standpoint, if your showroom is in constant disarray, you
will have bigger problems to contend with other than time
Today’s consumer is better educated, more demanding and expects
quality service more than ever before. Use your showroom to its
full potential and allow the layout, appearance and creativity to
be your best sales tools.
Prior to ever taking pencil to paper when designing your
showroom, you have to have a well-thought-out business plan. These
are some thoughts that have helped our showroom evolve
over the years.
- What is your target market?
- Which manufacturers will help you add more profit to the bottom
- Are there organizations available, such as buying groups, to
help your company create better buying power?
- Is carrying more of a variety always better?
- Is representing a product necessary if it is available on every
- Are you going to be using your local distributors’ or
- What size and how many displays are necessary to express your
offerings to your clients?
These are just a few of the important questions necessary to
develop the showroom that truly works for you. How does this
process help with time management? Here is just one example.
How much time do you believe it takes for a quality sales
professional to become adept at representing a particular cabinetry
line? A quality sales professional should be aware, understand and
stay current on all aspects of the manufacturers he or she
represents. Being well read and completely current will allow your
sales professional to better serve your company, make fewer
mistakes and have the ability to better serve your clients.
If you have too many offerings, your product knowledge will
drop, mistakes will increase and your sales volume could drop. We
have learned to save time, better serve our clients and have become
more influential with our manufacturers by being selective in our
Now that you are ready to design your showroom, special care
should be taken to ensure your clients’ overall good experiences We
have tried to create an experience for our clients that is both
positive and comfortable.
Special care should also be taken to create a showroom
environment that represents products that offer the best
opportunity for profitability. Below are some of the specifics that
we consider in our showroom design and planning process.
Creating a comfortable experience for the customer:
- Create a smooth traffic flow.
- Avoid bottlenecks and confining areas.
- Create an image that you would like to represent.
Showroom environment and profitability:
- Define your company’s specific offerings.
- Emphasize profitable items and displays.
- Use ancillary items and make them a part of the sale.
- Create necessary workstations throughout.
- Set sale parameters and expectations for each display.
- Study placement of items to create flow and interest.
Creating a positive experience:
- Create an area to make your clients’ children feel
- Have a semi-private material consultation area.
- Provide a private consultation space.
- Use your distributors’ and manufacturers’ showrooms.
If you create the opportunity for your clients to have a
positive buying experience, you will increase your overall sales.
By controlling the flow, offerings and atmosphere within your
showroom, your sales staff will be more efficient, better prepared
Your showroom is one of the most important business investments
you will have. With proper planning, you will be able to maximize
the investment in your showroom and increase your
The philosophy of time management in today’s showrooms is a
model for creativity, image and business success. Are you using
your showroom to its full potential?
Jeff Cannata, CKD, CBD
Kitchens & Baths Inc.
Carol Stream, IL