Month over Month: current month-to-date (MTD) sales compared to prior month-to-date sales (i.e. May, 2020 vs April, 2020)
Year over Year: current month-to-date sales compared to same month in prior year sales (i.e. May, 2020 vs May, 2019)
This data provided by Imagine Retailer reflects actual online sales by independent furniture retailers in 41 states. These home furnishing stores are typically family-owned independent businesses with brick-and-mortar locations across the United States, from the largest metropolitan cities to the smallest rural marketplaces. They include sales across every major home furnishings category such as living rooms, dining rooms, bedrooms, and mattresses from major vendors like Ashley, Coaster, Serta, Simmons and over 500 additional home furnishing suppliers and manufacturers.
If you have a website, turn on the cart.
A site that shows product without prices or a BUY NOW button is as productive as that salesperson who always asks, “How can I help you?” A selling site with eCommerce functionality turns “just looking” into cash in the bank.
As eCommerce increases, it’s important that your website is up to date. Remove old sale banners, update your store hours, tell customers how to reach you if you’re temporarily closed. Review your site page-by-page, and make sure you’ve got your best online foot forward.
Don’t expect immediate results if you haven’t done the careful work of crafting your online presence and generating online traffic.
However, most independent furniture store owners have the time during this downtime to think about their website.
Our Online Specialists are ready to help design your site and list your products, and our Marketing Specialists can teach you about GeoMarketing, email marketing, remarketing, search engine optimization, and digital advertising.
The data proves that furniture buyers are shopping online, even more so during the Coronavirus crisis as they practice social distancing, self-quarantines, and shelter-in-place guidelines. Home office furnishings are hot as every worker who can work from home has been ordered to do so. Those who can work from home tend to be higher-level managers, white-collar professionals, and the highly paid. In other words: they can afford a new desk.
Coronavirus has sparked significant spikes in web traffic and social media use. Cloudflare, a web performance and security company, reports that people are using the internet more and for more hours since the first COVID-19 deaths in the US at the end of February. Digital marketing agency Obviously tracked increased social media engagement including a 76% increase in likes for the first two weeks in March, and a 22% increase in campaign impressions from February to March. Mae Karwowski, founder and CEO of Obviously, said: “Community is more important than ever, and social media is a powerful tool in building and maintaining our connections.”
Your digital presence and social media strategy are more important than ever, but it has to be approached wisely. Keeping your company top-of-mind can’t come across as disingenuous, self-promotional, or ill-timed. Tell your customers how you’re handling the crisis, ask how you can serve them, and share how you’re supporting your community.
Those who have even a modicum of systems already in place have been able to rapidly shift gears and move forward with hope.
Others are wildly unprepared to serve their staff or their customers outside of comfortable “business as usual” parameters; these respond with fear.