June 18, 2008

Increase your Profits with Add-On Sales

Upselling can often double your profits. And it doesn't take much effort. Once you've created a relationship with a prospect, you simply need to show them other things that will add to the design you have provided.

Upselling is simply offering something else to your client - in addition to what they have already chosen to purchase - that would make their design even better.

REMEMBER: With add-on sales, what you are ultimately offering your clients is:
added convenience increased safety complete personalized service

Here are 10 ideas for add-on sales. Some may seem obvious (but are you offering them at every appointment??), and others may not. You might want to print out this list and keep it in your briefcase near the contracts, so that you remember to recommend something else before you write up the final agreement.

1. Custom Pillows
I remember when it seemed standard to offer pillows to match the draperies. Most designs are not so "matchy matchy" now, but custom pillows can almost always add to the look of a room. The options are limitless - you can create spectacular designs (and your profits are often high!).
2. Passimenterie
Yes, just a fancy word for trimmings. Bedding, pillows, window treatments, etc. always look more unique with the addition of beautiful tassels, fringe, and trim.
3. Coordinating Accessories
What will complete the room you are designing? A mirror? Artwork? Candles? Your clients will appreciate the convenience of getting the whole finished look.
4. Lighting
You don't have to be a lighting expert to recommend lighting. Connect with a local lighting specialist and create a joint venture.
5. Florals
Work with a talented florist, or provide elegant silk florals to add the finishing touch to a room.
6. Another Room
"While you're waiting for the samples to arrive, do you want to get started on your next project?"
7. Hardware
Changing the hardware on cabinets or furniture can literally transform the look of a room.
8. Motorization
If you are designing window treatments, offer the motorization upgrade for increased safety and convenience.
9. Area Rugs
Many homeowners have a hard time choosing rugs, and they will appreciate you taking away their struggle.
10. Fabric Accessories
Use the fabric from your client's upholstery or window treatment, or choose a coordinating pattern, and you can create anything. I've done chandelier cord sleeves, placemats, room dividers, ottomans, table runners, and even a flower vase cover. How about trunks, toilet seat covers, sink skirts, towels, napkin rings, drapery tiebacks, ... the ideas are endless!

While you are at the appointment establishing a relationship, and the client is ready to purchase, you know she already likes and trusts you. So why not suggest the perfect finishing touch to go with her _____? You'll be creating a better design, and putting more in your pocket.


Got some inspiring add-on tips of your own? Click to share them here.

1 comment:

Amanda Zettel said...

In a down economy, designers have the opportunity to re-position their value propositions to resonate with what potential clients are thinking and feeling. Examples are focusing on cost savings (using trade discounts) and offering new services to a new demographic. My firm is launching an online division(www.hmdhome.com) focused on adding value downmarket with low cost online design packages. Nows the time use creativity and a value added approach to muscle through the very real economic slowdown that is having a dramatic affect on our Industry.