Top 9 Tips to Find Clients Easier and Faster for Your Interior Design Business
Whether you’re a startup or a water-walking entrepreneur, signing up a new client in the interior design business is always exciting. Someone has just trusted you with their time, money, and dreams to renovate their home.
And yet there are so many hurdles that come between you and your clients. The competition is not going to get any softer. You have to stay up to date with current trends while making sure your brand is recognizable.
And still, you have to say no to underpaying or unrealistic clients.
So how can you achieve all this and still increase your client base?
Start by creating a mind-blowing interior design proposal.
Make them an offer they can’t refuse
You can have everything – a talented architect, a first-grade interior designer, and skilled craftsmen who make your clients’ ideas come to life.
And yet you’re not sure how to tell all that to your prospects.
The easiest way would be to just mail them your entire portfolio. Let them stare in awe and burn with desire.
But chances are they won’t have time to read it. Or they’ll go through a few projects and set them aside thinking, “Let’s have a few more offers before we decide.”
And that’s pretty much the end of it. Try to follow up on this, and they probably won’t remember your name.
You can try and write a proposal from scratch and hope that it finds a target.
OR you can let us do the heavy lifting and use our winning Interior Design Proposal that landed over $19,000,000 of business to our customers in 2021 alone.
We created a stunning cover page and added professionally curated photos which you are welcome to replace with your own.
The proposal comes with a pre-written services section where you can edit and even import customer reviews from your CRM app.
The best thing is that our proposal doesn’t leave much room for second thoughts. After clicking through the steps, your client can digitally sign the proposal and even pay right there, on the next page, using the integrated payment service.
It doesn’t get much easier than that.
My Houzz is your Houzz
Marketing on Houzz can drive a ton of leads to your interior business if you know how to do it right. The key to rocking this platform is to keep it updated and complete your profile 100%. Your profile can then act as an ad for your business.
So what’s so special about Houzz?
Houzz has revolutionized the way homeowners find and choose interior designers. The powerful platform sees a massive amount of traffic from search engines around keywords such as “interior designer <location>” so it’s definitely a place to be – much different than a people search.
What is more, Houzz has run its own research on its users and came to some interesting discoveries:
- the majority of users are upscale homeowners — 89% own their homes
- they have an average home value of $450,000
- an average income of $124,000
- 78% are married
- 27% are in their first home
- 72% plan to decorate or redecorate
- 40% plan to remodel or build an addition
- 10% are planning to have their new home custom built
- are spending more than average on building, remodeling, and renovation projects
If these people are not prime candidates for finding an interior designer, I don’t know who are.
And what does Houzz have to say? Any tips from that side?
- Houzz doesn’t try to hide the fact that its algorithm includes recency and frequency. So you better stay active.
- Reviews are gold. The more reviews the better the ranking.
- Don’t forget to upload a full description for each image. Or visitors may forget you.
- Ask and answer questions to build your network.
Socialize…let the word spread
Social media provide a vast pool of potential clients for interior designers because those sites promote media-based sharing and interaction. Since your business is pretty much visual, posts with beautiful pictures or designs are likely to be shared a lot.
Focus on Pinterest and Instagram because they revolve around videos and images. Users there often create mood boards and look for design inspirations. Social media is also a great place for you to feel the pulse of interior design trends.
Don’t worry if you can’t afford a social media manager. Tools like HootSuite or Sprout Special can help you speed up the post-creation and scheduling process.
Still, the whole point of social media is interaction with people. Ask your instagram followers to share pictures of their design projects and if they would be willing to do the same for yours. This is a good way to get some free advertising and reach wider audiences.
Social media referrals are among the most valuable forms of word-of-mouth advertising. About 33% of Facebook users have bought an item they saw on their news feed or a friend’s wall.
Put Google in charge
Once described as a “dark art” of digital marketing, SEO now helps companies generate thousands of new leads each month.
It’s time to put new leads on autopilot by putting SEO to work.
Where to start?
Start with WordPress. This platform is the best one for SEO to build your site. Squarespace and Wix are great tools, as well, but if you’re looking to get more clients from SEO, it’s WordPress all the way. You can also consider hiring WordPress website development services for better results.
The best way to spruce up your SEO is to start with keyword research. This will create a base for pretty much everything you do and help you see what search terms drive more traffic to your website.
You can use a free keyword tool such as Ubersuggest to analyze different keywords. You’re mostly interested in average monthly searches and keywords ideas section down the page. There you’ll find similar keywords some of which can also be relevant for getting more clients.
You can repeat the process for other keywords related to your business. When you find the keywords you need, it’s time to put them to work.
So where to use them?
- Page Title
- Meta Description
- Headings (H1, 2,3,4…)
- Body Copy
- Image Alt Tags
- Internal Links
Try to include your keywords naturally in these places but don’t go overboard, because Google doesn’t take “keyword stuffing” too kindly.
Now you need to build some links. You don’t need hundreds and thousands of them. For starters keep them relevant to the interior design world.
- Ask your suppliers to let you feature on their site
- Guest post on other interior designers; blogs
- Get featured on your local news portal as a story of success
Build, Brand, Blog
Entrepreneurs who blog as part of their content marketing strategy get 67% more leads than those who don’t and AI writing assistants can be of great help here. A great blog can easily become a hub for potential clients who come to your page for tips and tricks. This is your opportunity to shine and show off your skills.
Make sure to use the real images of your projects to set yourself apart from blogs that use stock photos.
Always keep in mind that your job is to create value. Lean too salesy, and you’ll turn off your readers in no time. Use the blog to set yourself up as an authority in the interior design niche.
Blogging is a perfect way to build new connections. You can feature posts from other, non-competing designers, brands, and bloggers who may prove to be a valuable source of new clients in the future.
However, writing interesting articles that people love to read is just one side of it. You should also tweak your posts to drive new traffic to your website.
Time for the good old keyword research.
Now you’re not looking for keywords that will help you rank, but those that people often use when looking to solve a problem they have with their home’s interior design.
You don’t have to go much further than Google. Start typing “how to remodel a kitchen” in the search box and look at all the different options that come up.
These are all valuable long-tail keywords that people have actually searched for.
Now when you have your keywords, use them in the key locations:
- Page Title
- Meta Description
- Headings (H1, 2,3,4…)
- Body Copy
- Image Alt Tags
Finally, when it comes to titles, you need engaging headlines that people want to read. Which one would you rather click:
“How To Decorate A Bathroom”
“How To Get A Spa Bathroom Feel For Less Than $200”
Traditional or digital marketing? Both
Although invented before the wheel, paid advertising is still a highly effective way of increasing your brand awareness and reaching new clients. If you’re limited with a startup budget, focus on digital advertising on platforms that give you access to your audience but also let you choose the cost parameters of each campaign.
Digital advertising allows you to quickly test-launch multiple ad versions and gauge which images, copy, and messages generate the most leads. Also, you can use Adsense or Adsense alternatives for displaying ads and generating more customers. When you strike gold, it’s easy to reallocate your ad budget towards the most promising campaigns.
One way small businesses often can get traction is permission marketing. This includes talking to people who are interested in what you have to say on a regular basis. It’s just the opposite of spam. You can do this through a podcast, a newsletter, or even a radio show that hosts new local entrepreneurs.
Whichever medium you choose, it’s important to show up consistently. This helps build trust while also reminding people that they can hire you for interior design projects.
You still need a portfolio
Just don’t use one instead of a business proposal. A well-compiled portfolio is the best way for potential clients to see if your process, expertise, and style match their needs and ideas. When putting your portfolio together, make sure to provide specific information that is helpful for your clients. For example:
- Project locations
- Project lengths
- What did the client want to achieve
- Interior design tools oy used
- Photos of the finished project
- Unique challenges, aspects, or features that you choose to implement
Of course, you don’t have to include every project in your portfolio. Its purpose is to demonstrate the best of the best of your design capabilities, though truly remarkable projects that reaped overwhelming client satisfaction.
But if you don’t have one
Maybe you’re just starting out and don’t have a portfolio to show. You may think that this is a problem, as more and more people are asking to see the portfolio. Maybe it’s because more people are searching for interior designers, or they just don’t trust online reviews.
One way or another, that’s not the end of the world.
If you don’t have previous work to show, you can ask your friends or family to recommend you to someone who is redoing a floor or building an extension.
At this stage, your friends and family will probably do a better job than you can market yourself. Reach out to people who are already redecorating or renovating. Chances are that they didn’t hire an interior designer because they thought their job was either too small or that they can’t afford one.
And they’re right about the second one.
But as a fresh designer, you’re much more affordable and no project is too small for you. They still need a designer, so get out there and offer to make their project end up looking 10 times better at a competitive price.
Be an interior design pro 101
Keep a high level of professionalism in all aspects of your client relationships. Professional appearance and conduct are important because you want people to return to you and recommend you not only based on your great work but also for your respectful and flexible service.
In the interior design industry, clients often use the same provider for years because they prefer personal experience. Homes and private spaces are pretty much personal matters, and it’s normal that your clients to develop a trusting relationship with a specific designer.
So what can you do to be a professional:
- Add value without selling too hard. Remember that clients need to go first.
- Reply to requests on time. Our proposals have a live chat option for this.
- Be on time for calls and meetings.
- Update clients on their project’s status
- Use available tools to showcase your expertise, ease up collaboration, and presentation
One day you’ll wake up, and check your inbox, only to find clients lined up with great projects on their minds and cash in their hands.
Until then, you need to find some paying clients yourself. I don’t want you to spread yourself too thin and try to implement all of these strategies at once.
Start with the least expensive ones, such as social media, blogs, and SEO. Over time, you’ll find out what works for you and what doesn’t.
I also don’t want you to get stuck in menial office work, such as writing proposals. You’re a designer and should devote yourself to creating inspiring interiors – just as we devote our expertise to creating winning digital proposals that cut our clients’ workload.
Sign up for a free 14-day trial today and you’ll quickly realize how much time our Interior Design Proposal can save you.
Start sending high conversion proposals today
more professional way to win more business.