After styling rooms based on the tastes of their customers, online interior design platforms are branching out by offering their own direct-to-consumer (DTC) furniture brands. Modsy, in one case, recently launched its first furniture line called Minna Home that includes sofas as well as chairs and is based on feedback from the company’s customers. The company has eight unique styles of sofas with matching chairs that have their own names and personalities. Its offerings were created with years of customer data as well as feedback and notes on what customers wanted for furnishings.
The most important takeaway the company learned, according to Modsy VP of Style Alessandra Wood, is that people want stylish items that feel like they fit within their homes. They also want pieces that look fresh and unique. And the platform took into account several elements when creating Minna Home such as durability, quality and comfort, Wood told PYMNTS in an interview, adding that the data-driven and customer-centric feedback made for a unique approach in the design. Wood also described the line as an offering that is highly competitive in the market when it comes to price. The price point for the brand’s sofas, for instance, starts at $1,099.
And “each sofa is custom built for each customer,” Wood said. The pieces are also made in a factory in the United States by artisans who have over 30 years of experience, according to Wood, and use humanely sourced feather down as well as recycled polyfill. When it comes to choices for the furnishings, consumers can pick out the shape and fabric they want. (They also have the option to have a sofa bed with certain pieces.) The pieces also ship within 15 days, which Wood says sets the line apart from traditional retailers and some DTC companies.
The Interior Design Platform
To discover the Minna Home line of furniture, consumers go through the company’s interior design process. As it stands, the company is an online interior design service that offers design packages at varying price tiers. “We deliver highly realistic 3D designs of your exact room,” Wood said. Those renderings are filled with shoppable furniture from top retailers, according to Wood, along with brands consumers might not know and can discover. The service also offers consumers a benefit beyond discovery: “You can virtually try on products and designs in your home,” Wood said.
Consumers don’t even have to start a project to begin the design process with a style quiz. The questionnaire lets consumers identify their preferences, as Wood pointed out that many customers don’t know how to describe their styles. Once consumers purchase interior design packages, the company asks detailed questions that include a shopper’s hopes and dreams for the space. Consumers, in turn, submit about eight photos of their rooms as well as basic length and width measurements. The company then builds a 3D model of the room. And, while Wood noted the process might seem super technological, she said “the experience is super seamless” for the consumer.
The company’s team of interior designers, in turn, styles the space based on the customer’s notes. And the consumer receives renderings that look like photos they can flip through like a catalog. (Wood also said that everything is shoppable.) Consumers can work with the design team to make changes or swap out the products in the images with new offerings if they want different colors or price points. Shoppers can also combine selections from multiple brands in one purchase: “You can add everything into one shopping cart no matter what the brand is,” Wood said. For payments, the company accepts PayPal as well as Affirm and most kinds of credit and debit cards.
When it comes to purchasing the Minna Home pieces, consumers complete that process through the Modsy platform. Wood says the process is as seamless as any other eCommerce site. In addition, consumers can also order swatches and “see and experience the fabric in real life before ordering,” Wood said, adding it provides another point of confidence for consumers. (Through a website designed for the swatches, consumers can select a sofa or a chair from the Minna Home collection to see fabrics that are available for individual items.)
With the help of swatches and digital rendering tools, then, interior design platforms are looking to present their own lines of DTC furniture with the aim of meeting the style preferences of their customers in the digital age.