Guest Column

  • Guest Column: Upgrading your store’s location

    February 27/March 6, 2017: Volume 31, Issue 19 By Vinnie Virga   (First of two parts) I have visited hundreds of flooring retailers, and the impression I keep leaving with is location is the difference between a thriving store and one that is flailing. Where you are situated is just as much a factor as inventory, payroll and other line items on your financial statement. With the economic outlook brighter

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    Guest Column: Best practices in digital image management

    February 27/March 6, 2017: Volume 31, Issue 19 By Phil Kenyon   The use of the Internet and mobile devices as a means of researching products is increasing on a steep exponential curve. This is particularly true in the flooring industry—where there is a strong correlation to fashion and design and, hence, a heavy emphasis on visuals. Now, more than ever, retailer/manufacturer websites represent a major portal for your customers

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    Guest Column: Perform annual business checkups

    January 30/February 6, 2017: Volume 31, Number 17 By Vinnie Virga Once a year there is a process you can use to help ensure you are managing your expenses well, taking a fresh look at how you operate and maintaining a staff and showroom floor that reflects your changing business trends. Step one: Take two days off in a row and don’t do anything related to your business. On the

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    Guest Column: Note to small retailers—Think hard but fast

    January 2/9, 2017: Volume 31, Number 15 By Vinnie Virga History, as we know has a habit of repeating itself, and that’s what’s happening again in the floor covering industry. Some or the larger vendors are aggressively raising their margins at the expense of small to medium sized retailers while providing strong competitive advantages to large dealers and national companies. This could have a negative impact on independent flooring retailers and one that should

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    Guest Column: Don’t fear the big boxes

    December 5/12, 2016; Volume 31, Number 13 By Vinnie Virga Many flooring retailers tell me they cannot compete with the likes of home centers and liquidators.  In my experience, these retailers are either listening to the whining of their salespeople (read: excuses for not closing sales) and/or they are not regularly shopping their competitors and don’t understand how they operate. Following are a few helpful ideas and strategies to increase

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    Guest column: How to stand out in your family-run business

    Expert advises maintaining your identity while contributing to the greater good November 21/28, 2016: Volume 31, Number 12 By Jacqueline Tabbah There is a fine line between respecting your family’s business that they’ve built from the ground up and being an innovator. This line can oftentimes feel like a tightrope, but once you make it to the other side, you will achieve a rewarding and meaningful career. Your first experience

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    Guest column: Adapting to survive in today’s changing world

    November 7/14, 2016: Volume 31, Number 11 By Vinnie Virga Once upon a time it was easy to be successful at marketing to consumers. You ran a great ad in the Sunday paper, came up with a really creative radio or TV spot, opened your doors and voila, it rained business. The key to succeeding in today’s media-saturated world is a little different. In the past, if you did a

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    Guest column: Offering a different take on the old ‘PK’ session

    October 24/31, 2016: Volume 31, Number 10 By Mike Nichols We’ve all seen it. A great sports team is exposed and gets beat by 50 points. You may have experienced this with your own college alma mater or high school. Have you ever wondered what the coach does at the first practice after such an embarrassing defeat? Typically, the coach encourages the team to go back to basics, the fundamentals

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    Guest Column: Matting- The last step in the installation process

    March 14/21, 2016; Volume 30, Number 19 By Adam Strizzi We hear it all too often in the professional cleaning industry: A building manager has a new floor covering installed (invariably carpeting right off the lobby floor), which after a couple of months looks just as bad as the carpet he recently replaced. Carpet cleaning technicians are brought in after about the third month and they tell the building manager that

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    Guest Column: Smartphone technology trains dealers’ salespeople

    Jan 4/11; Volume 30/Number 14 By Steve Damerow You can’t successfully sell product if your sales team doesn’t know and appreciate its attributes—and this requires a significant amount of time, effort and training for both the dealer and salesperson alike. The key to training salespeople and installers about the competitive advantages of multiple products is getting and keeping their attention, appealing to “what’s in it for them” through rewards and

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    Floor Covering News

    21st Annual Award of Excellence Survey

    Press Release

    Amorim Revestimentos invests 10 million euros in Hydrocork

    São Paio de Oleiros, Portugal—After only two years of Hydrocork’s launch, Amorim Revestimentos is taking a significant step and investing 10 million euros in its production infrastructure and procedures. This

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    UofCTS releases updated ITS Verification course

    San Diego, Calif.—The University of Ceramic Tile and Stone (UofCTS) has released an updated version of the Tile Installer Thin-set Standards (ITS) Verification course. Both the USA and Canadian versions of this

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    Gerflor USA increased LVT shipping in 2016

    Chicago—In 2016, Gerflor USA recorded a 500% increase in LVT shipments from its Chicago-based warehouse from June 2015-December 2016—significantly exceeding its U.S. growth goals. Contributing to Gerflor’s significant growth of

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