Now is the time of year to practice enticement in the door and window industry. Just as the spring flowers are blooming with their colorful petals and bulbs attracting bees and hummingbirds to come inside, so must the savvy fenestration marketeer do his or her best to entice potential customers to experience the look and feel of the company’s offerings.

In a world where we place a major emphasis on the internet for product promotion and sales, there is one thing that it cannot do. It cannot offer the customer an opportunity to touch, feel and literally interact with your products. The showroom can do that. A picture on the internet appeals only to the visual senses. But when you can get a prospect to touch, feel and look through your windows, and walk through your doors, then the opportunity presents itself to appeal to all of their  senses. After all, a homeowner personally interacts with their doors and windows on a daily basis — every time they sit or stand next to them, look through them, open and shut them or travel through them.

So, nothing says more about a door and window company than its showroom. A showroom represents a sizable investment, but the payback is there. Nothing sells a door or window more effectively than giving prospective customers the opportunity to see it up close at eye level and installed into an opening just as it might look in their home. It is a chance to feel how it operates, to see firsthand how it functions and to witness the beauty of the craftsmanship. Showrooms can enable you to solidify your company’s image as one of quality, craftsmanship, value and professionalism. These are all attributes that a prospective buyer wants to see in a prospective seller. An effective showroom will make the prospect identify with your company’s image while helping them to see a variety of the product types, styles, colors and finishes that you offer.

If your company sells doors, then entry into your showroom should be through one of your finest doors. Let the prospective customer experience the feel of walking up to a stunning door with a beautiful handle and secure-yet-easy opening and locking mechanisms. The prospect will imagine that he or she is a visitor approaching their own home. How does a visitor feel when they approach the gateway to my home, they will ponder. What does this door say about my home and my family? What does it say to a potential guest? And also, what does it say to a potential thief?

Once he or she enters through the statement door, then the prospect should walk into a showroom that is surrounded by your complete lineup of door and window offerings, showing the full spectrum of your product menu with different window types, colors and hardware options available. A variety of windows can be mounted on each of the two adjacent walls as well as the exit wall, which also should include an additional, equally stunning door. Impress them when they enter and impress them when they leave. As the prospect is led through the showroom, he or she can see how each type of window that you offer looks from the inside of the home, which is where a homeowner will interact with their windows most of the time. They can see how easy the windows are to open and shut and to clean, and feel the operation of the locks.

So my next point is to surround your showroom with plants and flowers so that prospects can feel what it will be like to interact with nature through each type of window, whether it is a double hung, a slider or a picture window with varying degrees of viewing areas involved. After all, the whole purpose of a window is to connect the homeowner to his or her surroundings, while simultaneously providing the creature comforts of the home’s inside environment. Only the showroom experience, and not even the best piece of literature, can enable your prospect to experience what this would be like if the sale is completed.

Another great idea is to have radiation bulbs set up outside of the showroom aiming solar and infrared radiation into the showroom through several of the windows. One window can employ clear glass with an adjacent window featuring low-e, solar glass or even triple-pane glazing. Invite the visitor to sit next to each window to actually feel the level of comfort they will experience from inside the home when the sun is beating down from the outside.

Earlier, I said to impress them when they enter and impress them when they leave. But it is the in-between that matters the most. Once inside the showroom, invite prospects to relax and visit with the salesperson. So, by all means have several conference tables available with comfortable chairs where prospects can sit, relax and discuss their needs with their salesperson. Offer them coffee and fruit or cookies, and chat with them about their particular needs in this relaxed environment.

When it comes time to complete the sale, offer financing. If you assume that everyone has spare cash sitting around just waiting to be spent on doors and windows, and you fail to offer financing, then you may end up experiencing the “I will think about it” syndrome, and we all know that this significantly lowers the probability of closing the sale. Also, even though the goal is to close the sale before the prospect leaves the showroom, applying pressure will get you nowhere. No one likes to be pressured, and it is a very big turnoff.

After all, if you have a great showroom, there will be no need for any of that – the lovely flower petals will relax and seduce the bee!

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