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Showing posts from June, 2020

LOGISTICS, LOGISTICS, LOGISTICS: AN E-COMMERCE STRATEGY TO STAY COMPETITIVE

The old adage was location, location, location to reach the consumer.Now it is logistics, logistics, logistics.Competitors with the best e-commerce strategy will be the winners whether they sell food, flowers, or flooring.Flooring manufacturers, distributors, and retailers are adding e-commerce capabilities on their websites and expanded delivery options to meet consumer expectations. Home Depot added a mobile app enabled store navigator so customers can locate products, check inventory, and expedite the online ordering process. The app provides store-specific maps, which allows customers to pinpoint the exact location of an item on their mobile device. In addition, Home Depot installed self-service lockers at the front entrance to offer the convenient pickup of online orders.Lowe’s is giving customers the ability to schedule a delivery in a narrow time frame.The company is also strengthening their ability to sell to professionals by adding business-to-business capabilities at its lowe…

FLOORING SALES AND THE CORONAVIRUS

At Surfaces 2020, I noticed the vendors were cautious while the attendees were optimistic.  Our March issue of the Floor Coverings Quarterly Updatehas pointed to a reason why.  Manufacturer floor coverings sales were weak throughout 2019 due to the housing recession from mid-2018 to mid-2019 as the Federal Reserve raised interest rates.  Manufacturer sales last year were also hurt by the surge in retail orders in late 2018 to beat the tariff increases on Chinese-made floor coverings.  The result was an accumulation of inventories at the retail level as consumer sales turned sluggish along with the drop in housing demand.However, floor coverings retailers began to gain confidence as housing demand recovered in the second half of 2019 as the Federal Reserve reversed course and lowered interest rates.  By the fourth quarter of 2019, consumer floor coverings spending was accelerating and retail inventories were being worked off.  So, retailers were ready to order once again.By the time re…