By Steven Feldman
Dallas—Beneath the new brand tag line “Home at Last,” Shaw Floors rolled out its new carpet introductions for 2020 with a greater focus on its mid- to higher-end collections—lines where floor covering retailers can make a better margin.
About a year in the making, Home at Last is Shaw’s new brand story that applies to a broad audience. “It’s about that feeling when we’re busy all week and finally get home and take our shoes off,” said Nikki Riemen, marketing manager, Shaw Floors. “That feeling of just being ‘home at last.’ We can all relate to that comfort, and home is also relatable across cultures. It’s about the journey, but it’s also about the return home.”
Riemen went on to explain that Shaw Floors is all things to all lifestyles at all price points. “It’s about being real. What do people love to do in their home and how does Shaw Floors play a role in that home? It’s not about the perfect dog; it’s about the dog destroying the toy. It’s about that meal with friends.”
With that said, Shaw’s most comprehensive introductions for 2020 fall within its high-end Caress collection and mid-range Bellera line, which combines high performance PET fiber, LifeGuard spill-proof backing, R2X stain and soil protection and the Worry-free Warranty, Riemen said. “It’s the complete package for consumers.”
There has also been a change in the target consumer for Bellera. “We did some research when Bellera first launched and it was about beauty and performance,” Riemen explained. “But now we realize pet owners is our target audience here. You think about the purchasing power pet owners have—more than 80 million families have pets. We want to make sure we’re giving them the best package. So you’ll see more of that pet story coming into play here.”
While just about every carpet manufacturer has introduced collections with a pet story, Shaw is going to market theirs differently. “We’re going to talk about giving your pet the comfort of carpet backed by the Bellera performance,” Riemen said. “So it’s more about spending the money for your pet, which I think is a different story than what you are typically hearing.”
Shaw is leveraging some popular styles with its new intros, including small-scale patterns. All follow the collection’s theme of timeless visuals with a neutral color palette. “We know what was popular when we first introduced Bellera, so we wanted to play on that and introduce some more small- scale patterns,” Riemen said. The 12 new cards can simply be added to the existing Bellera display via a conversion kit.
Shaw is also introducing a cheat sheet for RSAs. “We’ve incorporated a QR code, which allows RSAs to get some of those key selling points,” Riemen said. “Consumers can also scan these codes, which will take them to a Bellera landing page. We can also optimize this with consumer testimonials, some pet stories, really allowing us to keep this element in the showroom but change content and optimize.”
The second big introduction comes via Caress, which also gets a story refresh. “When it first launched it was really about the softest fiber,” Riemen said. “This year, we’re reshaping the story to go beyond softness and focus on style and design. It’s really about being refined and effortless.” All Caress intros feature LifeGuard backing with Anso nylon, she added.
The 17 new styles are a result of the travels of Shaw’s designers’ across the globe to bring home trends from different cultures. Those trends include Nordic, Bohemian Chic, Mediterranean and Zen. “These cultural experiences really come to life in some of our new patterns,” Riemen said. “You’ve got this broken pattern for Bohemian Chic and a perfectly symmetrical Zen pattern.”
With a focus on these four trends, Shaw’s designers created coordinating palettes of warm and cool neutrals along with accent rug colors. The Caress introductions feature small- to medium-scale, visually organic patterns and a sophisticated balance of fresh and rich hues. “I think the rug opportunity for Caress is great, especially paired with The Gallery, our premium hardwood introduction,” Riemen said.
Shaw’s goal with its carpet collections is simplicity by focusing on five core collections:
- Simply the Best Values
Foundations, a mid-range, timeless collection, gets five new styles. It is constructed of Anso nylon with Softbac backing. “We continue to see this perform well,” Riemen said. “Dealers stock it because Anso nylon continues to be a proven fiber system for us.”
Simply the Best Values is targeted toward that millennial first-time home buyer. Consider it affordable style. “We are excited about seeing how these perform in the market,” she said. These 12 new introductions fit within the existing display.
“If we stick to these five, it will be easier for dealers and RSAs when we have new introductions,” Riemen said. “Each intro will have a home within a collection. So that story doesn’t change. Only the visuals can change along with consumer preferences.”