Do you have any idea how much technology is effecting the Interior Design Industry? Surely, the question caught you off-guard, didn’t it?
Well, thanks to the boom in technology, the Interior Design Industry is evolving at a never-ending pace. The concepts and trends which had taken the market by storm a decade ago are no longer in demand and are considered obsolete by many.
Hence, to compete in the face-paced industry of today, Interior Designers need to let go of the old-school mind frame. Additionally, the need of the day is to embrace better ways of operating your business. In comes the concept of virtual design. Especially after this pandemic, interior designers have realized how convenient and cost-saving the virtual design option is.
Therefore, it looks like it is here to stay!
5 Ways in Which Virtual Design Can Help
1.Upgrade Your Online Presence
First things first, before you start off with introducing virtual design, an interior designer needs to work on their online presence. Make sure your website has a proper portfolio picture, updated information, blogs etc. Keep a focus on adding pictures. Let your work do the talking. Visual images leave a big impact on people. So, make sure your digital footprint is strong to lure the prospects in.
2.Clients Can Actually See How It Looks
Are you tired of difficult clients who keep changing the color scheme? With virtual design options, you can say bye-bye to this headache. With it, the client can see different color options without too much extra effort on your part. Similarly, with the rest of the things like furniture, light fixtures etc., the client can see how the entire house will look virtually without it actually happening.
3.Changes can be made in real time
Yes, there are clients who realize things aren’t looking quite right once you are finished designing their space(s). Those petty little changes again and again waste your time, money and effort. But, with virtual design, interior designers can easily change and manipulate things without much effort. Moreover, the client can even make endless changes until they arrive at the one which suits them and their budget.
4.Use 3D Programs to Design
It is important to give the client a real feeling of how their space with look. That is not always easily accomplished virtually because when visiting a place in person, you can FEEL the space. As interior designers, you should use tools which can make the virtual experience as good as REAL. 3D and 4D tools can make your project so life-like that it gives the feel needed to satisfy the client.
Another advantage is the quick feedback you and the client both can give one another. There are no interruptions and the client can easily tell you what changes they need. The client feels more in control even though in traditional designing everything is approved by the client too. With virtual design clients can feel this control as well.
These are just a few of the ways virtual design can help your interior design business. If you want to learn more visit our blog on e-design. Our next webinar is on How To Effectively Work Virtual Design into Your Business Mode. If you missed this webinar, check out our resource library for a recording.
The Top Benefits of Virtual Design Assistant Services for Interior Designers and Kitchen/Bath Remodel Professionals
Outsourcing is not only about saving time, it is about protecting financial resources and having a team to support and augment your “Client Experience”. Here are 4 reasons why you should outsource.
If you have been in business for any amount of time, you know “busy work” is time-consuming. When you think of the work involved in researching materials, ordering samples, back and forth emails or phone calls with vendors for pricing, ordering, paying and tracking materials, scheduling deliveries, ordering replacement materials and tracking those replacements, the mind and body go into a frenzy of anxiety and stress.
Not to mention, social media platforms that need updating, tending and interaction. Oh, and let us not forget the portfolio on the website needs to be updated with pictures of completed projects. And what about invoicing? Who will invoice the clients for on-time payments? Email is out of control and who knows how many important emails are falling through the cracks because of it.
A Virtual Design Assistant can support the business by taking on those tasks. Your remote assistant focuses on this “busy work”, while you gain back time, energy, peace and sanity.
The experience a virtual design assistant brings to the table is priceless. It not only involves industry experience but, in some cases, it includes corporate experience. This means methodical, dedicated and outside-the-box thinking. A virtual design assistant will have processes in place that will enhance, not take away from, your business. The experience in the industry is a huge benefit when considering that this assistant will be organizing and cleaning your email inbox, researching material sources, speaking with vendors about tile or cabinets or plumbing fixtures and handling your social media.
Someone with no knowledge or experience in the design or kitchen and bath industries will hinder your business. How many more missed emails will you have? How many questions will they have about what type of tile to source? Will they know the difference between framed and frameless cabinets, slab fronts or 5-piece fronts? Will they miss the fact that a shower valve needs to be ordered separate from the trim pieces? Again, industry knowledge and experience counts.
Protecting Financial Resources
As the business owner, you must consider where your financial resources are going, day in and day out. Income and expenses. Assets and Liabilities. So, how does a Virtual Design Assistant protect your financial resources? You do not have the extra operating costs from providing an office space, a desk, and tools to complete the job. This Entrepreneur article noted that business owners save an estimated 78% on operating costs when working with a virtual assistant! Why, you ask? Because a Virtual Design Assistant’s work is all done remotely, from their home and only paying for time spent working on projects.
Of note, a Virtual Design Assistant is an Independent Contractor. Meaning, you do not provide benefits or pay federal, state, or local taxes. According to this article from Nolo, a business spends anywhere between 20%-30% on payroll expenses for traditional W-2 employees!! Consider what this added revenue means for your business. Not to mention, by outsourcing the “busy work”, you are earning more income because you are working less and focusing on the work that brings you meaning and are passionate about.
This all now brings us to the Client Experience. These are buzz words in the industry but also in the corporate world. This became a real issue a few years ago because companies realized their customers were going elsewhere for products and services. They acknowledged that to keep existing customers and bring in new ones, changes had to be made. The home improvement giants made changes to internal processes, company “culture”, store appearances, employee engagement and staffing, in an effort to affect the “customer experience”.
In this manner, a virtual design assistant affects your “client experience”. Their experience not only saves you time and resources, but it allows you the opportunity to revisit those front-end, client-facing processes that have fallen by the wayside. This is the opportunity to put yourself in the client’s shoes and experience your design and project managing processes for yourself. At the end of the day, you want your clients to enjoy seamless, uneventful (well, as much as possible) projects. Because these clients will provide raving testimonials and bring you referrals and new work. This is the only path to growth and more revenue.
The goal of a Virtual Design Assistant is, ultimately, to support the business owner with their goals, dreams, and aspirations, and to support them in getting back to what they truly love: designing and remodeling beautiful spaces for their clients. What would you be able to accomplish with as little as 10 extra hours per month and more revenue going back into your business? Want to know more about virtual design assistant services? Contact Erica Graham Consulting to schedule a discovery call. Their services can make your business less stressful and more productive.