Great American Home Stores Shift to Digital

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The Great American Home Store, a furniture retailer based in Memphis, has a pair of flagship stores in the area, as well as 60,000 square feet of showroom and 80,000 square feet of warehouse space in a single location. “The showroom experience is unparalleled in our market,” says Justin Brown, the retailer’s digital manager.

The company, which has a total of five stores, can compete effectively with big-box retailers, Bowen adds. “We try to hire the best sales staff, and we provide more of a hometown, higher level of customer service. It’s neighbors selling to neighbors. If we can’t beat the big-box stores on price, then we beat them on inventory, availability, and quality.”

The company is also very involved with local charities and other efforts to give back to the community, Bowen says.

Even with all of these efforts, the company had depended on traditional advertising to drive foot traffic and sales, relying heavily on broadcast advertising in particular. But increasingly people were cutting the cord and ditching traditional television for over-the-top (OTT) streaming services like Netflix and Hulu, meaning they aren’t seeing the commercials shown on broadcast television. That’s not good, considering the Great American Home Store built its name on brand awareness, according to Bowen.

With a growing percentage of prospects ditching traditional television, radio, and print for digital options, it became increasingly necessary for the company to be able to track advertising spending on digital channels and compare the returns to what it was receiving from traditional advertising.

“We found ourselves at a crossroads,” Bowen says. “How do we measure the stuff that we’ve always done vs. the stuff we were doing on digital?”

The company looked at a few solutions before choosing LeadsRx’s attribution program. LeadsRx enabled the company to measure the effectiveness of not only traditional broadcast but of OTT and other campaigns. The platform also provided insights into customer journeys, including online and offline touchpoints, and could tie everything together.

Great American Home Store went live with LeadsRx at the end of 2019. While the initial reason was the consumer shift to digital, it turned out to be a fortuitous decision when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, forcing the temporary closure of the warehouse and showrooms and resulting in severely reduced foot traffic, even when stores did reopen.

The reduced business also meant a sharply reduced advertising budget. The LeadsRx insights helped Bowen decide where to make cuts.

“We’ve been able to gain a ton of insight on our entire marketing effort, how people interact with advertising, in conjunction with the website, and how many different [customer journey] paths there are,” Bowen says.

Before LeadsRx, the results of some advertising campaigns were based largely on conjecture. Now Great American Home Store had exacting insight into the benefits of different marketing efforts.

“LeadsRx allowed us to benchmark our ads against one another and see which ones were generally just getting the best results,” Bowen says. “We now can track OTT advertising to the point where we can track [resulting] store visits, and even sales.”

The results have been excellent on both sides of the ledger. Even with a 50 percent reduction in the ad budget, sales are up 12 percent. E-commerce sales rose 1,200 percent, though Bowen notes that the huge jump was tied more to the pandemic than to LeadsRx.

With LeadsRx, the cost of customer acquisition dropped from $131 to $55.

Based on those results, Great American Home Store plans to use LeadsRx to help build a business development center, which will use the leads to build relationships with customers before they ever walk into the store. 

The Payoff

Since deploying LeadsRx, Great American Home Store has achieved the following results:

  • increased sales by 12 percent; and
  • reduced the cost of customer acquisition from $131 to $55.

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