To Houzz or not to Houzz, has been the question circulating for the past year or so. Let’s discuss it.
For those who don’t know, Houzz is a website and online community that focuses on home improvement, decorating, landscaping, etc. Husband and wife, Adi Tatarko and Alon Cohen, started the company in 2009 out of Palo Alto, CA.
Since its launch in 2009, Houzz has attracted more than 40 million monthly users who can find inspiration, shop for furniture, or search through the profiles of roughly 1.5 million professionals offering everything from interior design to pest control services.
- Worth $4 billion
- 1.5 Million Experts Listed
- Raised $400 million in venture capital funding last year
- $30 million purchase of IvyMark, a business management platform for the interior design community, which it acquired in February
- 25 million unique monthly visitors
- 11 million photos
- 10 million products
- 60 professional categories on Houzz
The company, now worth over four billion dollars, has about 200,000 interior designers who have uploaded millions of images from their portfolios that are shared in their “ideabooks.”
Designers first started having issues with Houzz when the platform started tagging their project photos with links to buy the merchandise. The products weren’t necessarily the exact product, but were “lower-priced and inferior,” according to the petition that started in response to the change.
Houzz founder, Alon Cohen, reaffirmed the platform’s commitment to the trade. “We hear you on the tags that are displayed on photos. As a result, we’re making a change in the way photos are displayed and hiding the tags whenever a designer’s photos are displayed to homeowners in their local area. We hope that this, in addition to our partnership with Ivy, will help demonstrate our commitment to the needs of the trade,” he said in a statement.
So should you list your business in the Houzz directory?
Houzz frustrations aside, the platform still rules the home décor market and should still be leveraged to promote your business!
What we suggest:
- Maintain a strong online profile with good ratings and reputations.
- Use Houzz as a directory listing.
- Don’t spend money on the platform.
- Direct people to your business’s website.
- Use Houzz as a tool with new clients.
- Inspire potential clients!
Use Houzz as a directory listing. If you get contacted through Houzz for a project, we recommend that you send them your website for further information.
We do not suggest deleting your account. We recommend that you continue maintaining your Houzz account, and instead use the platform as an opportunity to redirect potential clients to your business website. If you take your profile off of Houzz, the platform essentially posts a notice on your profile that says you are no longer active which has connotations that your business is closed. It’s one thing to have that message posted there, but all of the images you uploaded to the ideabooks all over the site remain linked to that profile message.
Furthermore, Houzz is not only a great platform for designers to display their portfolio and network their services, but it’s also a wonderful starting point for your clients.
Many design clients may have a certain look that they know they love, but they don’t know how to properly describe it. Similar to Pinterest, Houzz offers up a wonderful tool for design clients to gather their most favorable designs and relay that style to their designer.
Should you use the Houzz site builder?
Houzz offers a free website-building tool called “Site Designer”. The site will be published with a houzz.com subdomain or with a custom URL purchased through a domain-registration service.
Although the tool is simple to use for beginners, business owners who are looking for a serious internet presence should invest in a custom-built site that reflects their brand. Houzz’s site builder offers a basic, non-SEO friendly website that does not offer any customization ability. We do not recommend using the Houzz site builder.
Houzz is a great opportunity for businesses in the home décor market to list their business and showcase their portfolio. At Click & Co, we recommend maintaining a strong profile that acts as a directory listing that inspires potential clients to visit your (non-Houzz) beautifully branded business website.