September 1, 2021

How to Use SideDoor as an Interior Designer

How to Use SideDoor as an Interior Designer

How to Use SideDoor as an Interior Designer

Gone are the days when your sole sources of income as an interior designer were billable hours and product markups on to-the-trade items. You relied on afternoons spent pouring over specs or touring clients through showrooms, tracking each in 15-minute increments. For you to earn income, you had to actively design –– there was no way to scale beyond hiring additional team members.  In short, there was no way to really monetize your taste and grow your own brand.

SideDoor set out to change that. A new digital baseline has been set and the old school home furnishings industry was finally being pushed into the digital economy.  We also saw the disruption occurring across the affiliate marketing space and how influencers were leveraging social media to continuously sell product to followers-turned-customers and earn passive income. We knew this was a model that could be adapted to the interior design industry to diversify earning streams. And we decided to be the first ones to do it.

SideDoor empowers designers to transform their business by curating product collections to share with clients, as well as across social media and their own website. These collections are transactional, giving designers an average commission of 30% on each completed order through one of their collections. The best part? SideDoor handles all of the coordination and logistics. You simply share beautifully made to-the-trade items, customers buy them, and SideDoor handles the PO process, tracking, shipping, and delivery.

Does it sound easy? That’s because it is. In this piece’ll walk you through exactly what affiliate marketing is, how SideDoor is changing the face of the industry, and how you can use SideDoor as an interior designer to diversify your income streams and monetize your taste! 

What are Affiliate Links?

Affiliate marketing through affiliate links has become increasingly popular in recent years as brands realized social media influencers and internet personalities could share products with their loyal followers and turn them into customers to generate sales. Here’s how it works: a designer or design influencer shares an affiliate link and generates traffic to an online retailer. In turn, the retailer pays a small commission on sales generated based on those referrals.

For you, this is an opportunity, regardless of your current social media presence, to share links with your client base but unless you have a huge following it’s not going to move the needle for you. Retail links also send your client or follower to E-Commerce or other Retail sites.  In return you get a small commission around 90 days later.  This is not good enough or worth it for the majority of interior designers.

What is SideDoor?

Prior to SideDoor’s launch, there was no way to share Trade/Designer products with shoppable links.  No one else was doing this –– and we’re still the only one.  We understand both side of the equation, work closely with the brands to protect their brands and pricing, and we know how to naviage the nuance and complexity of the industry.

SideDoor built a proprietary tool so designers can share products directly with clients and create shoppable pages and collections on their website and social media. These are collections that are unique to you, but aren’t limited by the number of customers that can shop.

All you have to do is share the collection and shoppable links with your clients, SideDoor takes care of all the logistics (no more POs!) and shipping, then you receive commission 

How does SideDoor differ from other affiliate companies, like RewardStyle?

SideDoor is the only affiliate marketing company that works exclusively with the design industry and that allows us to offer access to the to-the-trade and high-end brands that your clients expect. 

You may have heard of RewardStyle. They’re one of the biggest players in the affiliate marketing space. Their ShopLTK tool is used by social media influencers and bloggers, and it’s the name people know. There are interior designers who use it and there are a handful of high-end brands on there.

But name recognition doesn’t make it the best for designers. RewardStyle was built for fashion influencers. They focus on smaller commissions with bigger brands. If you want to sell Amazon bedding, Crate and Barrel dining chairs, or Nordstrom towels, then, yes, RewardStyle would work for you. However, if you want to work with exclusive, trade-only design brands, like Hudson Valley Lighting or Alder & Tweed, and earn commissions up to 30%, RewardStyle doesn’t cut it. 

With RewardStyle and other retail affiliate programs, it’s a numbers game. Followers lead to swipe ups lead to $10 dishware sales on Amazon. But, guess what that earns you? Pennies on the dollar. With SideDoor, quality is better than quantity. You don’t need ten thousand followers or daily Instagram stories –– you only need dedicated customers who trust your eye for design and are eager to buy the products you share. We had a SideDoor member recently whose client ordered over $100,000 in product from a curated collection. That means she’s going to earn over $30,000 of pure profit in commission. That would never happen on RewardStyle. An added bonus: this designer will get paid as soon as the items are delivered –– other affiliate companies require 90 day waiting periods.


Plus, SideDoor keeps your reputation as a high-end designer who only sources the most exclusive, upscale products. You don’t have to resort to mass market retailers. You keep your go-to sources and you earn commission.

How Does SideDoor’s Model Work?

Here’s how designers work with SideDoor to earn commission. It’s a straightforward process, even for those who haven’t worked within an affiliate marketing model before.

  • Sign up for SideDoor –– it’s for professional designers only and it’s totally free! 
  • Gain access to all vendors available within SideDoor’s database, including Arteriors, Dovetail, Modern History, and many others.
  • Create shoppable pages and links to share with clients. Each item earns a different commission amount based on its final cost.
  • You maintain the relationships with your clients –– they’re your customers. They purchase through the shoppable links you’ve provided, but then SideDoor takes over.
  • We make it easy for you! SideDoor places all orders that come through from your site or social media on our accounts at the wholesale/stocking dealer price and handle all logistics, order fulfillment, tracking, and coordination, including drop shipment and freight.
  • Once the item is delivered, you’re paid a commission based on the difference between the Vendor’s Designer Net Price (Trade Price) and the price the customer pays for it (minimum IMAP or above).

You might be wondering: how does SideDoor make money? Our profit is based on the difference between wholesale and designer price. We only make money when you make money.

SideDoor Simplifies the Buying Process

Because we have decades of experience in the interior design industry and we’re looking to shake things up, we’re simplifying the buying process. We know that you spend too much time on back-end admin work, filing POs, and tracking down deliveries. We want to alleviate you of all the busy work. 

Our industry is still mostly Hard, Off-Line, and Opaque.  We’ve made a tool that’s Easy, Digital, and Transparent.

Our members love that they don’t deal with POs! Once an item sells through your link, it’s on SideDoor to coordinate. If there are issues with damaged product or shipping, SideDoor handles it. You sell the product, you collect commission. What happens in the middle isn’t on you.

Additionally, you don’t have to worry about credit card processing fees or about taxes –– SideDoor handles withholding and submitting sales tax. We make it simple for you to sell, simple for you to earn money..

How Much Money Can Interior Designers Make on SideDoor?

Answer: A TON

Here’s the deal: Would you rather make 3% or 30%?

That’s an easy equation, right? With RewardStyle, you could make as little as 3%, with most commission rates coming in around 7%.

SideDoor blows that out of the water by offering up to 30% commission. Plus, there’s no limit to what you can earn. You can create shoppable pages for clients, share links with customers and social media followers, post collections on a blog that’s optimized for web traffic, and more. As long as customers buy, you earn commission. 

Want to learn more about creating alternative revenue streams as an interior designer with SideDoor? Check out our blog post here.

Sign Me Up! How Do I Get Started?

If you’re ready to explore the possibilities with SideDoor here. SideDoor is a completely free tool, available to any design professional who meets the minimum requirements. You don’t have to sign a contract or make any sort of commitment. You can explore the tool on your terms and decide if it works for you. 

We only make money when you make money, so rest assured that we’re here to make SideDoor work for you. We want to see the design industry –– and designers like you –– grow and succeed in the digital economy. 

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