Carpet mills see opportunity in mid-point market

Home Categories Carpet Carpet mills see opportunity in mid-point market

For years the carpet market operated as bifurcated market, with strength at the low end and at the high end—and a gaping hole in the middle. However, inflationary pressures in recent years have created a mid-point in the market, prompting budget-conscious consumers to adjust their spending habits. So, instead of stepping up to buy higher-end pattern carpets for a bedroom at $30 per square yard and higher, homeowners are likely to choose a middle range of $12 to $15 per square yard wholesale.

This mid-point muscle within the carpet market has only expanded in the last six months as inflation remains persistently high. The good news is mills saw this trend coming and developed products accordingly. “At this price point a consumer can step into a nice pattern that not only allows them to express their personality with something that looks fashionable, but also something that feels great, too,” said Brad Christensen, Shaw Floors’ soft surface category director. “Additionally, this price point offers an entry point into products that offer great benefits for those who want their pets to be able to love the flooring, too.”

Even at the lower price point, consumers are still looking to make a statement with their purchases—whether that’s a statement about color or design. So says Thomas Kilgore, senior product director, Mohawk. “Consumers are just being conscious on price, which lends itself to [more middle-end products],” he said. “We saw the market coming back and were prepared for it. As we went through the product development cycle, we were very conscious of how this would translate in the retail showroom.”

According to executives, within this expanding mid-point carpet market customers can find a variety of constructions, technology, style, design and performance that will often meet their needs. For example, fiber technology has changed over the years and now you see yarn-like, solution-dyed PET as a system for patterned carpets.

“It’s the advancements in technology that are becoming increasingly more affordable,” said Mike Sanderson, VP of marketing for Engineered Floors. “Whether related to fiber innovation or enhanced performance, the technology that was once reserved for much higher-end products are now finding their way to a larger consumer audience. And whether it’s by the room or whole house, if a consumer finds the color, style, performance and within a budget, that’s what they will select.”

Within the carpet market, the assortment of mid-point to better-end soft surface flooring options continues to multiply, with choices of cut pile textures, LCLs, tip-shears and patterned loops becoming a focal point in a room from a design standpoint. “The styling being offered today in the [mid-point range] offers the consumer design and color options like never before while meeting the active lifestyle needs of pets, kids, work-at-home and entertaining,” said Larry Morris, regional VP for Southwind. “We see this growth trend in mid-point to higher-end goods continuing to grow and evolve.”

Tarkett Home’s carpet program primarily focuses on this segment of the carpet business, offering designs that are very fashionable, but still affordable, to consumers. “As we were creating our identity, we knew that the residential replacement portion of the business was where we wanted to focus,” said Jason Surratt, president, Tarkett residential. “As the consumer has been seeking more design options in affordable patterns, we met that need. Our most popular styles are still the basic designs as many consumers still want to make purchases of pattern carpets they see as timeless. However, we see a trend toward MLCL (multi-level cut loop) patterns. MLCLs give consumers more depth to the visuals the design is portraying. It gives the carpet a three-dimensional look, creating greater depth to the pattern.”

With carpet purchased on a room-by-room basis these days, less carpeted areas allow consumers to purchase what they really want versus just settling for something that fits their budget. As Shaw’s Christensen explained, “With the increased use of hard surfaces, the desire to approach each room as its own project has also increased, allowing for more design-oriented choices. A price-driven solid color texture paired with a high-definition, digitally printed hard surface product will properly elevate the home and delight the end user.”

Following are some recent introductions:

carpet marketEngineered Floors

In 2023, Engineered Floors introduced Gold Standard and Silver Lining. These two products represent the company’s latest PureColor fiber innovations featuring High-Def Color Technology, providing a more vibrant and more vivid color combination per twisted fiber. The result: more depth, dimension, durability and design.


Several of Mohawk’s Colorwall products include price points in tune with the middle to upper-middle price point, targeting 40% to 60% of the market. Urban Hues is a 100% loop product, part of the SmartStrand collection, which is positioned as a high-end aesthetic at an attainable price point. Sculptured Touch, part of the EverStrand collection, is a premium-quality PET polyester fiber made with up to 100% post-consumer recycled content. It will soon be joined by Sculptured Touch II, as this best-selling pattern gets a facelift, according to Kilgore.

carpet marketShaw

For Shaw, Highland Twill from its Simply The Best collection is a non-descript, high-style pattern that’s designed to feel as good as it looks. “It invites the end user to safely move from a more conservative choice to an elegant visual that will discretely elevate the room,” Christensen said.

As for Remixed Classic from Shaw’s Pet Perfect program, tasteful color blending, soft feel and bleach- and fade-resistant properties defines this carpet. “It’s a product that is easy to love—and even easier to live with,” Christensen added.


To meet the needs of this market, Southwind will be introducing a collection of 13 fashion products later this year—six LCLs, four loops and three tip-sheers from its New Expressions showcase, priced in the $15 to $20 range.

carpet marketTarkett Home

The company’s newest collection, Cloud 9, is 100% solution-dyed polyester with a natural resistance to staining and fading but without compromising softness. The new carpet fiber exists to help thriving families create comfortable sanctuaries in the spaces where they rest and relax. All 2023 launches from Tarkett Home feature Cloud 9 and reflect the latest color and design trends. The collection features 12 new products in a variety of tonal textures, multi-color textures, patterns and loops.

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April 10/17, 2023

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