Are you looking for a better way to sell furniture online? Try YouTube.

As the founder and CEO of OFM Inc., a family-owned office and school furniture manufacturer and distributor in North Carolina, I figured online videos could help showcase some of our products.

Starting last year, we filmed short clips demonstrating the furniture and showcased them on our own YouTube channel (youtube.com/ofminc). These are not Hollywood productions — just short videos of my son Blake, who also serves as the company’s chief operating officer, and an assistant talking about the furniture and showing how it’s used.

This can be especially helpful for something like our Model 247 24-Hour Big and Tall Chair, which has over 16 functions with synchronized seat and back adjustment.



After a year, we’ve made more than 90 clips, which have been seen a total of 21,000 times so far.

A little while ago, I thought I'd check in on how the videos had affected sales so I had my staff pull the relevant numbers. Here's what I found: Furniture that was featured in the videos had a return rate of about half of a percent lower than the average, which is 1.5 percent.

When you distribute as much furniture as OFM does, a half a percent difference is huge. It's even better when you consider that our video clips did not require expensive cameras, paid actors or complicated advertising campaigns.

I think the videos work because they build confidence in the product for online buyers. They can see what it looks like when someone sits in a chair or pulls up to a desk a lot better in a video than in a photo. And that means they're more likely to buy the furniture that best suits them -- and less likely to return it later.

Abel Zalcberg is the founder and CEO of OFM, Inc., a Holly Springs, NC-based furniture manufacturer, distributor and wholesaler.

 

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