Starting your own interior design company is as complicated as it is exciting. To have something you’re passionate enough to turn into a business is amazing, but ensuring that business lasts the tests of time takes hard work and determination.
Starting your interior design brand takes more than a good sense of style. Even the best interior designer’s business won’t succeed if they don’t treat it as a business first and foremost.
When running your own interior design company, you’ll be responsible for much more than the design process. You’ll have to manage and oversee numerous projects and staff, run successful marketing campaigns, and see to it that the business’s accounting is taken care of. Going in without the proper knowledge and wherewithal of how to run a business can spell major trouble for your interior design company.
If you’re ready to start your own interior design company, below we’ve highlighted some of the essential steps to set you and your interior design company up for success.
Pin Down Your Company’s Name and Brand
Your company’s name should be an embodiment of your brand. It’s important to nail down both before you get started on any other portion of your interior design company. It can be tricky to come up with a name that’s both catchy and clever while still encapsulating your brand.
Rather than paying an agency to help come up with your name or identify your brand, we recommend doing some brainstorming sessions to discover them on your own.
Some examples of questions to ask when defining your brand are: What purpose will your company have in the interior design market? Who will your target audience be? When naming your company, keep in mind not to use words that are too hard to spell or pronounce, keep it short and to the point.
Not only will you save money by coming up with your brand and name on your own, but you’ll also be more invested in your company. Clients pay for what they think your brand is worth.
The more time and effort you put into ensuring your brand properly represents your company’s intention and purpose will result in interested clients who are interested and relate to your company’s brand.
Define What Design Services Your Interior Design Company Will Provide
By the time you’re ready to open your own interior design company, you should have some preferences on services you’ll be interested in providing. Clearly outlining what design services you can provide to clients will help you keep your business organized and structured. You should outline both your design style and the parts of the home you prefer to style.
Defining your services will also be crucial when you begin marketing, as you’ll be able to use those specific services to target audiences interested in what you provide.
Reach Out To Suppliers & Contractors
You’ll want to ensure you have reliable suppliers and contractors when starting your own interior design company. Your suppliers and contractors will be your lifeline during projects. Think about staying local when choosing suppliers and contractors to work with, as the further away they are the more room for error you leave in delivery times.
You can ask fellow designers for recommendations or through an online review. Always be on the lookout for new suppliers with lower costs. Don’t be afraid to test out a new supplier on a project, just ensure you do the research beforehand and think about how much you’re entrusting to them.
Try to explore lesser-known furniture retailers, avoiding big box names to give you a unique edge over furniture recommendations. Companies like Bouclair (www.bouclair.com), for example, offer unique collections curated for you, like “Exotic Nomad,” “Scandi Culture,” and “Soft Tropics.”
Build an Enticing Website
Your website should be well-polished, neat, and representative of your interior design company’s brand. It will be a reflection of you as a designer, so make sure to make it stand out to potential clients.
Be sure to include your contact information and availability on your website. It’s highly recommended that you include a portfolio of your work on your website as well. Potential clients can sift through your work to see what they have in store when working with your interior design company. It’s a great way to show off your completed projects as well as communicate your design style to the public.
If you don’t feel that you can build the website yourself, you can always hire someone to put it together and maintain it for you.
Focus On Marketing
If you want more traffic to your website, strong marketing plans are pivotal to the success of any new business. Use search engine optimization (SEO) to garner more traffic to your website.
Easy ways to utilize SEO within your interior design company’s website are to add descriptions to your portfolio photos, add location-specific tags so people searching in that area are more likely to come across your company’s site, or you could even think about adding a blog to your website where you detail your work.
A blog can be beneficial as you can expand upon your process and offer potential clients insight into the way you and your team get the job done. You’ll want to ensure your website, portfolio, and social media sites are always up-to-date.