Dialing for dollars: Dutchcrafters salesperson tops $2 million

SARASOTA, Fla. — Selling furniture can be hard enough as it is, but selling furniture over the phone?

That takes a unique skillset, one exemplified by Billy Adams, an inside salesperson for Amish furniture specialist Dutchcrafters. In 2023, Adams recorded 611 orders for a total of around $2.017 million for the retailer, part of JMX Brands.

So what are Adams’ best attributes as a salesperson?

“He’s really trustworthy. Seeing a photo online, they have to trust the person on the other end. If they don’t trust the person on the other end, you’re not going to get past that,” Christeen Jorno, assistant sales manager, told Furniture Today. “Billy has a great way of relating to customers and getting them to relax. He has excellent communication skills, so they bond with him rather quickly. With his light humor and upbeat attitude, they trust what he’s going to tell them.”

For his part, Adams says he’s just doing what comes naturally.

“My approach is to be myself. I don’t like it when a salesperson is in character the whole time,” Adams said. “The way I am with customers is the way I am with coworkers and everybody else; I’m the same person. Every call I get, I’ll say to myself ‘I’m going to make a sale right now. I’m going to close the deal and give the customer what they want. I’m going to make it happen.’”

“I keep that positive attitude. If you don’t, things aren’t going to work out for you,” says Billy Adams.

“I try to limit my small talk because I don’t want to be on the phone for hours and hours,” he continued. “I try to relate to them at some level unrelated to furniture. I need them to like me in order for them to purchase furniture from us. I spend a lot of time trying to sell myself first.”

Adams joined Dutchcrafters in 2020 right before COVID in a sales support role and had to learn a lot remotely. After a couple of months, he was promoted to a sales specialist.

“I’m glad it worked out that way; it helped me in the long run,” he said. “I had training, but it’s hard. We were so busy that people didn’t have time to get in-depth in training, so I had to figure it out. Being in sales support helped me in this position. It was more intense and my lead bank grew a lot. There were times I had almost 500 leads I was working. It was such a fun experience for me. I love going to work and being super busy all day.”

Jorno said while the inside sales team has plenty of leads, they’ve also got lots of products they’ve got to know, meaning a salesperson has to be able to think quickly.

“We have 17,000 products on the website so when you pick up the phone, you have no idea what the customer is going to ask for. You have to be confident and comfortable with the products,” she said. “Billy has a great understanding of the products and features, and that goes a long way in building a relationship with customers.”

Adams said he’s confident that everything in the lineup will make customers happy. “Luckily, the items we sell, we know they’re going to get quality furniture, and it’s going to be amazing when they get it,” he said. “We know that, but they don’t know it yet, so you have to be very good at sales to close these deals in the $20,000 to $50,000 range. They really have to trust you.”

While Adams topped the list for the inside sales team, Jorno said all five members eclipsed $1 million in sales in 2023, and they’re each other’s biggest cheerleaders. It marked the third consecutive year that Adams surpassed the mark.

So what’s next? He said if he tops last year’s numbers, he will hit a major milestone in the process.

“Honestly, my goal for this year is to hit $10 million overall in sales. I think I’m at seven-point-something since I started with the company,” he said. “I want to hit that $10 million mark. My goal every year is to do better than last year. I try not to stress myself out too much.”

See also:

  • Few stores, but mighty: Georgia retailer boasts 6 million-dollar salespeople in 2023
  • Mathis Brothers RSA hits stratospheric sales figures

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