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Room & Board

Room & Board pairs ratings & reviews with Q&A to drive conversion

Room & Board has been designing contemporary home furnishings for more than 30 years. In every piece of furniture they offer, you’ll see the principles that have guided Room & Board from the very beginning: passion for design, natural materials, and American craftsmanship designed for life.


Percentage of products on Room & Board’s website that have reviews or Q&A


In 2015, the conversion rate for consumers who either read reviews or Q&A was 95% higher than site average


Percentage of online and offline sales influenced by reviews and Q&A

The Opportunity

In the three decades since Room & Board opened the doors of its first furniture showroom, the company has focused its attention on service, selection, quality and value. Room & Board operates just 11 retail locations across the U.S, so most prospective customers have not had the opportunity to see the company’s modern, American-made designs in person. R&B’s online presence is incredibly important to sales as a result.

As online sales grew, the company needed to find new ways to differentiate its high quality products from hundreds of other online furniture retailers, but knew that it was going to take more than copywriting and photos. That’s why the company made the decision to partner with PowerReviews in 2010 to implement a comprehensive ratings and reviews solution that would help the company increase conversion.

While reviews have proven to be incredibly valuable to the brand, Room & Board also recognized that their consumers had questions while they shop. After seeing great results with ratings and reviews from PowerReviews, Room & Board made the decision to implement Social Answers Q&A.

“The biggest thing we hear from our Design Associates is that ratings and reviews create a deeper engagement with customers. They come to the store with more questions and more confidence.”

- Kimberly Ruthenbeck, Director of Web Experience

“It's really a multiplier effect to have both ratings and reviews and Q&A on our site. ”

- Kimberly Ruthenbeck, Director of Web Experience

“Ratings and reviews have provided us with an amazing body of information for us to improve our business. ”

- Kimberly Ruthenbeck, Director of Web Experience

Adoption of Q&A

Shortly after implementing Q&A, it became a key tool in the purchase journey. In 2015, Room & Board received an average of 480 questions from consumers each month. The company noticed that the majority of questions are posted on Sundays, likely from people who visit a store over the weekend and have a few remaining questions before making the final purchase.

“Although Q&A has lower engagement than ratings and reviews on our site, we found that those who engage with Q&A convert at a higher rate, spend more time on the site, and view more pages on our site,” said Kimberly Ruthenbeck, Director of Web Experience at Room & Board.

Driving Conversion and Engagement Online

Room & Board has found that having Ratings and Reviews and Q&A on their website has had a big impact on conversion. Rather that competing against each other, these two solutions work together to drive big results. In 2015, the conversion rate from consumers who either read reviews or Q&A was 95% higher than the site average.

In fact, reviews alone have influenced 30% of both online and offline sales for Room & Board. Combined with Q&A, that number jumps to 45%.

“It’s really a multiplier effect to have both ratings and reviews and Q&A on our site,” said Ruthenbeck.


Driving Conversion and Engagement In-Store

Ratings and reviews and Q&A aren’t just used by online shoppers. These solutions are also influencing shoppers who go to a store to make a purchase. Because the company collects email addresses, they’re able to determine what percentage of people read reviews and then make a purchase in-store. Of those customers who make a purchase after reading reviews or Social Answers Q&A, 46% do so in-store.

“The biggest thing we hear from our Design Associates is that ratings and reviews create a deeper engagement with customers,” explained Ruthenbeck. “They come to the store with more questions and more confidence.”


Learn more about Room & Board’s success with UGC.
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