The hot tub industry is seeing a resurgence of an old sales technique that was common 20 years ago—having hot tub show rooms that include an area where customers can take a dip.
A rising number of spa retailers have been installing new sections of their stores, often referred to as hot tub mood rooms where clients can sit and soak while considering their prospective purchase.
One pool and spa company in Tuscaloosa, Alabama said that they’re building an addition onto their store in order to employ the increasingly popular sales technique. Lynn White and Les Chalkley, the brother-sister tandem who own Water Works Pool & Spa there in Tuscaloosa plan on building a showroom that will have a backyard feel, complete with mood lighting, plants, and an arbor. The siblings will have five or six models available for customers to try.
Not only is the showroom a good place to increase hot tub sales, spa retailers are also saying that they see a jump in “add-on” sales because it’s a place they can adequately display all the extras available to hot tub owners. Companies say they’re more likely to sell covers and cover lifts in one of these show rooms.
Bob Lauter, the CEO for Master Spas in Fort Wayne, Indiana says that reviving this sales tactic is giving dealers more traffic. He says, “you are seeing more people who are trying to show the product in a really good way, to have a controlled setting…so [the customers] can see the water and lighting features.”
Across the country, from Arizona to Alabama, companies are seeing success from their mood rooms. A company located in the former says that one benefit of having the hot tubs on for a “wet test” is they can show how quiet and easy to use the tubs are. Even if customers aren’t getting in the water, there are major benefits to having a fully functioning spa in a show room.
I could see the problems that would come along with such an addition—the extra space needed to have several running hot tubs as well as the maintenance work involved might become a detriment. Not to mention all the work that would go in developing the ambiance necessary for one of these rooms.
Can you hire a designer who specializes in “hot tub ambience?” Someone out there has to have that on their resume.
What do you think? As a retailer, would you consider having a wet test room for customers?
And as a customer, do you think having a few hot tubs to sit in and see in action would make you more likely to make a purchase?
Personally, I try to avoid making decisions while wearing a bikini.