Specialty Fabrics Review December 2021 - 35

WHERE TO INVEST TIME AND MONEY?
Visible location or not, these days
fabricators may be uncertain about
how many resources they should
devote to their brick-and-mortar
customer showrooms, given pandemic
concerns and that material choices can
technically be made online.
When well-designed and filled with
both photos and helpful information,
online showrooms can be enormously
helpful for showing customers your
capabilities and range of products.
Further, with the ongoing uncertainty
of COVID, many consumers appreciate
the general safety and convenience of
remote shopping.
That said, a website may be a
poor substitute for a comfortable,
service-oriented space that encourages
customers to be hands-on in
comparing fabrics, colors, shapes
and designs before making their final
investments. On-site showrooms can
also help customers understand how
materials will look and feel in real life.
While every fabricator uses a
different strategy, we interviewed
three who find value in offering both
a comprehensive, user-friendly online
showroom along with a welcoming
on-site showroom so customers can
narrow down their choices before
making their final selections in person.
Here are their suggestions for
establishing and maintaining robust
showrooms in both categories.
BRICK-AND-MORTAR BRILLIANCE
Make customers feel involved. Oyster
Creek was specifically designed with
an open floor plan so customers can
see into the work space at any given
time, separated only by a counter.
" We want them to walk into a
welcome spot, not someplace that's
sterile, " Keeler explains. " It should be
different than internet shopping. "
TOP: Oyster Creek's floor design gives
customers a glimpse of production in
progress even if they're only there to
shop for materials.
BOTTOM: When Greg Keeler renovated
the Oyster Creek building, he replaced
the windows with replicas of the
originals to maintain the vintage
character of the showroom.
Photos: Oyster Creek Canvas Co.
www.SpecialtyFabricsReview.com 35
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Specialty Fabrics Review December 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Specialty Fabrics Review December 2021

Specialty Fabrics Review December 2021 - Cover1
Specialty Fabrics Review December 2021 - Cover2
Specialty Fabrics Review December 2021 - 1
Specialty Fabrics Review December 2021 - 2
Specialty Fabrics Review December 2021 - 3
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