by William Sampson
How do you develop an effective
showroom without the overhead costs?
Build a mobile showroom to take
displays to your customers.
Putting a showroom
Colorful graphics make the
mobile showroom a rolling
When Sean Benetin of Millwork & More
LLC in Bernardsville, N. J., started looking
into the costs of building and maintaining
an effective showroom for his business, he
was floored. A good traffic retail location
he looked at would have cost $40,000 a
year for the overhead without even considering the cost of displays and staff.
Benetin’s solution was to put his
showroom on wheels.
He outfitted a box van with a sophisticated system of displays inside and colorful graphics on the outside. Now, instead
of customers having to find him, he can
take his showroom to them. Not only is the
cost dramatically less than a freestanding
showroom, but he figures it is more effective selling and business tool.
Outfitting the truck
Benetin said the cost of the truck and
adding a few things like a generator and air
conditioning was only about $10,000. Doing the full wrap signage and setting up the
interior samples and displays cost much
more but was still less than would have
been spent in a traditional fixed showroom.
Base cabinets are mounted on both
sides of the van, and a series of simple
locking bars keep all the doors and drawers closed when the truck is in motion.
“All the cabinets are painted white so
customers can focus on the mechanical
details, not the finish,” says Benetin.
Path to a sale
Between the base cabinets and wall-mounted displays, Benetin can show
customers the differences between
every option he offers — from simple
European-style cabinets to beaded inset
construction. Door samples line most of
one wall. The other wall has an ingenious
“build your own column” display with
components mounted on the cloth-cov-ered wall with hook and loop fasteners
so customers move the components
around to get the look they want.
“It’s very tactile,” says Benetin. “
Customers really like it.”
All the drawers and pullouts in the
base cabinets demonstrate different
slides and drawer styles available. Inside
the drawers are hundreds of finished
samples, moulding profiles, counter-top options, and even glass and metal
screen samples for doors.
Everything in the van is clev-
+ Watch the action:
To see a 360-degree video walk-around of the mobile showroom,
go to Cabinet MakerFDM.com/5745.html
To see a video tour of the inside
of the mobile showroom, go to
erly arranged so Benetin can walk the
customer systematically through all
of the choices. He has his laptop out
on the counter and enters all the data
and prices the project as the customer
makes the choices.
As the customer moves down one side
of the van and then the other, he follows
Benetin’s order form logic and ends up
with a section that displays framed association membership certificates, awards and
significant press coverage of the shop’s
projects. The total effect, Benetin says, is
to basically close the deal by the time the
customer is ready to leave the van.
He even has the customer following