Brick-and-Mortar Isn’t Dead: The Upside of a Retail Space with Victoria Sanchez

Episode #116 the Wingnut Social Podcast

Victoria Sanchez is an award-winning designer and the owner of ‘Victoria At Home’, a premier home furnishings boutique with showrooms in Alexandria, VA, and Santa Fe, NM. She has a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in interior design—and over 30 years of experience in the industry.

What You’ll Hear On This Episode of Wingnut Social

  • [0:55] Ready for Winter to be over!
  • [2:23] Darla’s upcoming speaking gigs
  • [6:13] Victoria Sanchez’ background
  • [8:06] All about Victoria’s retail store(s)
  • [11:00] What comes first, the chicken or the egg?
  • [13:10] What’s tricky about a retail store
  • [15:10] With Age comes wisdom
  • [17:35] When do you open a location?
  • [20:07] Is the expense of a retail space worth it?
  • [24:33] How important is the location?
  • [31:00] Marketing for interior designers
  • [34:45] Why having a showroom is worth it
  • [38:35] What up Wingnut! Round

Connect with Victoria Sanchez

Resources & People Mentioned

Your retail space is a portfolio of your work

Victoria has always been drawn to retail and she loves the opportunities it provides her. People come into her store and get to know her style and personality. They gather a general sense of who she is—while she gets to know them. She is able to explain that she’s a designer and show them her aesthetic in one moment.

Victoria points out that retail space isn’t for everyone. She didn’t launch hers until her kids were in high school and she had more time—and cashflow—to get it going. You need tools and resources in play, as well as money for inventory, display, and staff. Above all, you have to love working with people.

She shared that about 25% of her revenue comes from her retail space and about 75% is from design work with clients. She uses her retail space as a catalyst for her design business and it has significantly increased her client-load. Victoria shares more about her locations and why their placement is important. Keep listening!

More designers need to invest in marketing

Victoria is passionate about educating designers. She believes the current curriculum in design programs is lacking proper marketing techniques for the specific field. She points out that it is of paramount importance to have a marketing plan in place. If that’s not something you’re comfortable with—hire someone who is. Victoria works with Andrew Joseph PR to help market her new location in Santa Fe.

She was honest with herself and knew she didn’t have the time or expertise to properly market her business. Her community in Santa Fe is small and she learned quickly that marketing and networking go hand-in-hand. If people like you, they will talk about you—and word-of-mouth in a small community will get you places.

Is having a retail space worth it in the day and age of digital shopping? Can you compete with the online giants? Listen to the whole episode to hear Victoria’s take on the industry and why she believes brick-and-mortar is here to stay. She’ll share some of her numbers, expenses, and how her two locations are so different.

Connect With Darla & Wingnut Social

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