Boyd: High-tech for Pillows

Boyd: High-tech for Pillows

David Perry – Furniture Today – 06/26/06

Boyd Specialty Sleep is introducing an interactive sales system designed to help retailers sell pillows with confidence. Called the Sleep Sync System, it uses a touch screen to get key information from consumers, then recommends pillows from the Boyd Personal Profile line that will meet the consumer’s needs, said Denny Boyd, president.

The system is coordinated with a new patent-pending mattress selling approach that Boyd has developed and that stems from its Simmons Beautyrest LuxeAire sleep sets. Those airbeds provide an individualized Support Index, from 1 to 100, for the consumer, and also a Comfort Index ranging from 1 to 4.

That Comfort Index, which indicates if a consumer favors a plush or firm bed, or one in between, is fed into the patent-pending Sleep Sync System when the consumer is shopping for pillows. The system also asks consumers if they are side, back or stomach sleepers, and queries them about health and allergy issues and the age of their current pillow.

Then, using the results of consumer research conducted for Boyd, the system recommends pillows that will meet the consumer’s individual needs.

Boyd offers a full line of pillows and sleep accessories, and furniture-quality display racks to showcase those products. Consumers are encouraged to try the pillows out in the store and to use them in the mattress shopping experience.

The Boyd Personal Profile pillow line includes memory foam, synthetic down, latex and memory foam clusters, in models retailing from $29 to $69. An antimicrobial mattress pad, a sleep massager and a memory-foam topper also are offered.

Boyd said the system will help retailers put more bounce in their pillow sales. “Pillows,” Boyd said, “are a virtually ignored category. Retail sales associates lack the confidence to sell them and often haven’t been trained to sell them.”

The interactive system ensures that all consumers will receive the same high-quality sales presentation, Boyd said. It also incorporates an inventory management system that helps the retailer keep all pillows in stock. “Most retailers don’t know what is selling by store,” Boyd said.

The Sleep Sync System was successfully launched at the April High Point market. Boyd said the retail response was “unbelievable.”

He knows how important it is to make pillows an integral part of the mattress purchase process. “You can invest in a $5,000 mattress,” he said, “but if you have a $5 pillow you can have a $5 mattress experience, not a $5,000 mattress experience.”

Boyd also said that too many retailers focus on selling just the mattress. “The mattress is the touchdown,” he said. “They are forgetting about the extra point” — the pillows.

Actually, it’s extra points, since most consumers buy two pillows. Boyd said most consumers want to buy pillows at the same time and place where they buy their mattress.

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