Case Study

International Design Source (IDS) Grows revenue and market share by redefining the customer experience

Learn how this Florida-based husband and wife-duo breathed new life into their business with a state-of-the-art online catalog and product configurator, growing revenue, increasing market share, and redefining the customer experience.

International Design Source (IDS) is a to-the-trade showroom, selling exclusively to interior design professionals with showrooms in Naples and Sarasota, Florida. Owned and operated by Emilio Sadez and his wife Linda since 1997, the two have grown their business to include over 80,000 square feet of floor space, featuring a large collection of ready-to-go items of fine furniture, fabrics, and accessories. Altogether, their catalog represents over 300 brands from the most respected names in the industry.

“The most important thing is that Doug and his team listen and respond with the right actions.”

Emilio Sadez - Owner - International Design Source

The Challenge

The way IDS designers have traditionally done business has changed dramatically.

Historically, designer clients brought their clients into the IDS showroom for elaborate appointments that, at times, lasted all day. In this scenario, clients would accompany designers to furniture trade shows – taking in big-city attractions, spending the day with designers shopping for home furnishings, and reveling in advantages not available to the general public. Today, that has all changed.

These long-standing designer clients are mired in that traditional sales model. Today, clients don’t want to spend all day on-site shopping and make their furniture purchases. The world has changed and adopted a virtual buying experience.

IDS realized they had to evolve to meet the changing buyer and buying behaviors.


Overwhelmingly, those behaviors include the desire for a great online experience, in addition to having access to shop in the traditional showroom. To not only survive but thrive in the face of disruption, IDS had to provide this convenience-oriented, efficient, and exceptional online experience while maintaining the classic showroom experience.

The Plan

Emilio and Linda would have to determine how to meet IDS’s
growth aspirations, redefine the customer experience, launch an eCommerce
storefront for their catalog of products, and automate their essential business

The internal costs of manual business processes were hindering
IDS’ growth to a significant degree. With growth, there were more transactions.
With more transactions, there were additional operational costs and more room
for errors. Addressing the change in customer demands meant building out a
quoting process with a faster turnaround, a higher degree of accuracy, and an
opportunity for clients to construct their orders online and in real-time.

In outlining their plans for the growth and development of
IDS, Emilio and Linda determined that their focus had to center on three
actionable initiatives:

  • Cost savings
  • Revenue growth
  • Improved customer service

The two had determined the old way of operating IDS was no longer sustainable. IDS’ design customers and their downstream customers came to expect near-instant gratification in the shopping experience, a la the Amazon effect. IDS had to step into the 21st century and find a way to bring the showroom to their customers in an intuitive, attractive, and operationally responsive way.

So, IDS began engaging software companies to create the virtual storefront and links to business management systems needed to achieve the company’s goals.

The Search for a Solution

Emilio and Linda began evaluating solution providers to meet IDS’s business goals, understand the unique needs of the furniture industry, and have the design acumen to create a beautiful and intuitive customer experience. Their search came up in conversation with a sales rep of Vanguard, one of the furniture lines that IDS carries. That rep recommended Emilio meet Doug Cottrell, CEO of Clarity Web Solutions.

After speaking with Doug, Emilio recognized Clarity had the tools, knowledge, and experience to enable IDS’ growth goals and meet designer clients’ and their downstream clients’ expectations.

The Process

Clarity specializes in two of the most difficult B2B online solutions: Online Product Configuration with Integrated Product Visualization.

Together, IDS and Clarity outlined the framework for automated pricing, streamlined online ordering, and interactive visualization of customized products.

Once the eCommerce component had been outlined, designed, and was ready to be built, IDS’ got to work preparing the necessary data for their new, centralized business management system. This provided accounting, sales, and operations accurate data at the click of a button and meant customers could be confident that their quotes were delivered accurately, in real-time.

The Results

Online Product Catalogs and Pricing Configurators that facilitate the customer online order process have revolutionized a convenience-oriented model for IDS. The configurations of complex and custom products have given control to IDS customers in every part of the ordering process. The experience improved on both ends of the journey, for customers and employees at IDS. According to Emilio, the Online Product Configurator creating the single biggest opportunity for IDS to increase revenue, lower costs, and accelerate business growth.

When asked about his experience working with Clarity Solutions, Emilio responded, “Absolutely. By all means. The most important thing is that Doug and his team listen and respond with the right actions.”

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