A sales center designed for Trumark Homes includes visuals, videos, and virtual reality goggles.
A sales center designed for Trumark Homes includes visuals, videos, and virtual reality goggles.

The recent decline in housing sales is an indicator that the market is cooling off. According to Commerce Department figures, new single-family homes sales in October 2018 were 8.9% lower than the month before and 12% lower year over year.

The market changes give builders the opportunity to distinguish themselves in a challenging period. One way to stand out to customers is with a state-of-the-art sales center, one that makes a lasting impression and enhances the buying experience.

Companies need to create an experience that goes beyond presenting a sales pitch and instead engages and informs prospective buyers. Sales centers need to be both aesthetically pleasing and inviting to visitors, and provide the important community and unit information in a detailed, visual and concise way. Home shoppers have high expectations for every element of their buying journey, even before a community or homes are built, and builders must adjust their marketing efforts to meet their needs from the start.

It’s important to remember the sales center’s fundamental goal: to stimulate action and help close deals. Before investing in an on-site sales center, here are a few key questions to ask:

  • Will it be helpful and useful for the sales team and potential buyer?Will it promote enhanced engagement?
  • Will it promote enhanced engagement?
  • Does it provide real differentiation for your brand?
  • Does the environment allow for a deep connection between the sales team and buyer?
  • Does it provoke action?
  • Does it leave a lasting impression on the customer?

Every sales center is unique but when it comes to interior, and you want to make the most out of your space. Don’t leave out these must-have elements:

  • Comfortable and efficient workstations for the sales team
  • Ariel view of the community
  • Technology area (think Kiosk, monitors, iPads etc.) to showcase community amenities and home features
  • Well-stocked kitchen area
  • Your builder story (showcase it through a collage or interactive video, etc.)
  • Interactive and visually appealing renderings, plot maps, portfolio books and brochures
  • Well-equipped design center to guide buyers through upgrades and options for their new home

Builders should also consider how a sales center can address common pain points beforehand. Think about space constraints on a tight construction site, budget restrictions, or if the sales center might need to be relocated during construction. Builders might also need to consider compressed sales schedules, or need to set up an interim sales office while a permanent one is being built.

In a competitive market, being able to give your firm a much-needed edge with an innovative, revitalized sales center keeps the doors of opportunity open and your brand strong. There’s only one chance to make a first impression, and you need to make it memorable.