The dash to digital is proving to be an especially big hurdle for the retail and home furnishing sector.

It is a very ‘visually driven’ industry where shoppers like to look, touch and feel their products before they buy. Translating that experience onto the internet has been a tough job to sell, with an online presence – such as a web or store front – being the minimum requirement.

It is much more effective to have an omnichannel experience, where online connects to the in-store and web-to-store experience. What provides the ‘selling-edge’ however, is the ability to create and visualize a design on screen in 3D. Omnichannel 3D solutions enable customers to select and change items in a design. They can also produce a photorealistic image or allow customers to immerse themselves in their creation wearing 3D glasses. Customers can do this from their home computer, on their phone, or whilst they are in-store.

The same design from the 3D solution can also generate an automated flat-plan design and enable the customer to purchase the items, either in-store or on-line. The retailer’s entire catalog collection is at their disposal. It is the perfect opportunity to upsell or cross sell products based on customer insights.


The benefits of cross-selling and upselling

Cross-selling presents the opportunity for a customer to purchase a product that is related to the item they are currently purchasing. For example, if the customer is buying a new sofa, they could be shown various rug options that complement their choice.

Upselling typically involves offering a higher-end version of what the customer originally considered. For example, if the customer is looking at a new brown fabric sofa, the option of upgrading to brown leather is one option.

Amazon is the master of this craft, attributing as much as 35% of its sales to cross-selling. Amazon uses automated prompts such as ‘Customers who bought this item also bought…’. to drive sales across product categories. But store associates and sales staff are also available to lend their expertise to the selling process, adding value to the entire purchase chain.


Personalization is a natural driver for cross-selling

Today, customers love to personalize. The days of ‘off the shelf’ home solutions are drawing to a close as people search for the personal touch in their home designs.

Consumers want to choose not only the style of sofa, but also different colors or patterns. They also want to do it immediately. By putting them in control and enabling them to imagine what a home make-over could do to their living space, solutions like 3D planning help deliver this personalized experience.

Creating a completely unique design using a 3D planning solution is a relatively simple solution, taking only a few minutes of time. Starting with the room dimensions, users can receive brand recommendations or take the opportunity to hand pick all the elements they would like in their own living space.

For example, HomeByMe’s 3D planning platform automatically populates a customer’s basic room layout with suggested product sets. These are generated based on the inputs created by the customer, and the ground rules established by the retailer. The retailer can choose which products will appear in each product set to position certain items as upselling opportunities. Additional items such as lamps, rugs and artwork may not be part of an initial design; the retailer makes a design more realistic and tactile by including them as part of the design process.

Sometimes the key to making a successful cross sale is placing an item in a setting that makes it desirable or highlights its potential functionality. It allows the customer to imagine using, feeling and touching it. This increases the likelihood of purchasing the item along with the ‘big ticket’ purchase such as a sofa.


3D planning aids cross selling in multiple ways     

Interactive online 3D room planning combines digital space planning, automation and intelligence in one solution to enhance the consumer experience. It is part of a seamless omnichannel design process that also improves a home retailer’s business. The interactive nature of the solution also helps to build an emotional connection between the customer and the brand.

No matter how big a retailer’s showroom is, showcasing all product variations isn’t possible. Furniture is an incredibly visual industry and showing only a few options in store will not be enough for customers. Given that a large percentage of people want to look online before visiting a showroom, it is becoming increasingly common for large home retailers to use omnichannel technology to increase market share.

By implementing an online 3D planning solution and integrating it with their catalogs, retailers can offer a much wider array of options to their customers at the right time, increasing the likelihood that customers will stumble upon products that perfectly complement their dream designs. Additionally, providing a custom design to the dimensions of the customer’s actual living space assures the customer that their furniture choice is the right fit for their space.

A 3D planning solution implemented in-store via tablets or kiosks enables sales reps to provide better service for a business. By going through the planning process with the customer or even accessing the design created by the customer, they will be able to see what the customer likes and help them recommend additional products that work well with what they have been created – or create the magical upsell or cross-sell that will net their business greater reward.

It is a vital add-on in the competitive retail environment – one that enables a business to defend or expand its market share. It is also a vital solution in providing additional means of revenue with extra selling opportunities. If it works for Amazon, it can work for furniture retailers too. With the addition of 3D planning and a little bit of know-how in the art of upselling and cross-selling, everything is possible in the home furnishings world.

To further explore on how a 3D planning solution supports cross-selling and upselling, visit our website built specifically to serve home retailers where you can organize a demonstration of the platform with a member of our team of experts.

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