4 Ideas to Turn Your Sales Center into a Top Sales Tool

Business Management
As consumers become savvier in their home-buying decisions and research, they are also demanding more than viewing a floor plan and community map. Enter sales centers. They certainly are not what they used to be. The modern sales center has emerged as one of the most important marketing tools in a builder’s arsenal. A sales center must serve many purposes. First, it’s the point of entry where your buyers get the important first impression of your new community. Second, it must provide your sales team with the opportunity to interact with and engage buyers, and provide useful information that will keep the conversation active. Investing in a well thought-out design center can help you get the most from your sales office investment and close deals. Consider these four ideas when planning and designing your next sales center to make it pay off in the end: 1. Optimize space with a good layout. When designing your sales center, identify the location and carefully prepare a floor plan to maximize the space. Work with a designer to lay out the most effective and usable traffic pattern to ensure you aren’t creating bottlenecks or challenges for your sales staff to engage with the buyer. The traffic pattern should also present information in the sequence that makes sense for your community. Think about what you want to showcase and when that flows with a potential buyer’s journey. 2. Connect to buyers with design and branding. Sophisticated buyers and renters expect an experience when they walk through the door, so it’s critical that you give them one. Understanding how color, fabric or visual elements are perceived by your demographic is important. The colors, styles and presentation you use should be correct for the age and income range of your potential buyers. People have an amazing emotional connection with style. A stylish sales center can set the stage and also drive a customer’s experience to go beyond simply speaking to a sales or leasing agent or viewing materials. 3. Don’t forget the structural components. Identify where the windows, doors, wall outlets and fixtures will be located to design graphics and displays and avoid conflict with the build out. This plan also makes it easy to build out the required space for thermostats, electrical outlets and vents. Your sales team will need adequate and comfortable workspaces as well. Thinking of these components ahead of time can save you a lot of work and money in the end. 4. Use technology to engage and connect. One of the biggest shifts in sales centers in the last decade has been the introduction of new technology. Interactive kiosks, for example, appeal to millennials in your sales center so they can check out elevations, participate in a model tour, or flip through a portfolio book with high-quality renderings and floor plans. Combining visually compelling content with various elements of interactivity is key to connecting to this important audience. A modern sales center should reflect your brand, help prospective buyers visualize how they will live in and enjoy their new home, and provide a comfortable experience for them in the discovery process. Stay one step ahead with your marketing strategies, and make a sales center part of your plan for 2019. This article is adapted from a story in the January/February 2019 issue of Sales + Marketing Ideas, available through iTunes and Google Play. Jonathan Wilhelm currently serves as chief digital officer for Marketshare, Inc., helping builders with all things marketing for more than 35 years.

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