It’s a mix of tried-and-true pocket door technology and splashy hi-tech, digital displays. Customers will find it interactive, inspiring and informative.
Pella has come up with a way to reinvent the window and door showroom.
In fact, their 4,000-square-foot retail outlet in Montgomery Square Shopping Center is no longer called a “showroom.” Pella prefers the term “experience center,” after a remodeling at the location was completed in late summer.
The 94-year-old company has come up with a way to display windows and doors in an airy, sleek setting that is extremely user friendly.
“We wanted to build a display where the customer could see the whole product, the ability to walk around a window, a 360-degree experience,” says Fred Cernetisch, Pella Cincinnati general manager. “It lets customers see holistically everything in place.”
This is accomplished by an open display space with rows of over 30 windows hung on a track system allowing them to be rolled out in the middle of the room so customers can view, compare and operate different product lines, including custom and hung windows, casement and sliding windows, entry and patio doors.
“We can easily lock the display down so people can work the doors and the windows and compare different hardware,” Cernetisch says. “It also lets the consumer easily see side-by-side how a type of window compares in wood or vinyl.”
The sliding window displays are supplemented by digital product presentations on large or small screen monitors.
“If you have a blueprint to explore we can put it on our screens and stick windows on it to see how it might work,” Cernetisch explains. “This kind of display space lets you experience your project.”
Another cool display you won’t find at any other showroom is a massive 26-foot sliding patio door that frames a conference room. Sales folks will be happy to show how the entire door neatly folds into a wall pocket.
Pella is in the midst of revamping most of its 200 showrooms in the country into the new state-of-the-art “experience centers.” The Montgomery makeover is among the first 20 that have been completed. Cernetisch says the effort is one way the company can provide a shopping experience not available on the internet. He notes the remodeling industry is one area that has not yet been fully challenged by online shopping, especially when it comes to doors and windows.
“A window or a door is still a product that customers want to see and experience. You typically buy windows once or twice in your whole life so this has to be a destination store.”
Cernetisch says window shoppers still want to get out and kick the tires, or in this case, work the sills, experience the hardware of a door or window. He thinks the Pella showroom makeover is an enhanced way customers can do just that.
“People need to make a connection to their own home with a door or window. This space lets them do that.”
The new Pella showroom is versatile enough where the space can be thrown wide open to accommodate the education sessions Pella holds for contractors and architects, seating up to 80 people. Wine tasting and author events for the general public also are in the works.
Pella of Cincinnati, in Montgomery since 1996, has always been a resourceful outlet since it offers its own in-house engineering and architectural experts to work through design and installation issues. Unlike other window and door manufacturers, Pella’s store will sell to individual consumers, contractors or architects. Competitors often send contractors to buy through lumber yards or retail outlets
“Our new experience center will help us continue our reputation in Cincinnati as a user-friendly site for designers and builders as well as handling individual customers who may just need a turnkey install and finish,” Cernetisch says.
A ribbon cutting and grand reopening of the Pella store is planned for Friday, Oct. 18, at 4 p.m
The Pella experience center is located in the Montgomery Square Shopping Center, 9869 Montgomery Road, Cincinnati, OH 45242. For more information visit, www.pellawindowscincinnati.com, or call 513.936.5240.