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Despite price pressures, high-end laminate products holding up

Even though overall prices within the laminate category have dropped in recent years and more products fall into the low and mid range price points, there is still a market for high end goods.

As such, there are still laminate companies promoting high end products as they recognize it not only separates dealers from the pack, it allows retailers to earn higher profits as the margins on these goods are better. Continue reading Despite price pressures, high-end laminate products holding up

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Fall product preview: More focus on value, USA made laminates

As sales continue to be hard to come by, laminate manufacturers are putting more emphasis on products that give consumers extra value for their dollar while touting the fact more of these goods are being produced domestically.

“The buying process in 2011 finds consumers almost universally scrutinizing their flooring purchases through a new value lens,” said Roger Farabee, senior vice president of marketing for Mohawk’s Unilin divison. “A strong price/value relationship is of paramount importance to them.” Continue reading Fall product preview: More focus on value, USA made laminates

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Laminate: Is the hourglass still in effect?

In the year or two leading up to the recession, the laminate category was experiencing what many called an hourglass effect. Meaning consumers were more apt to purchase either a high-end product featuring the latest technology and designs or a low-end floor that gives a quick, easy updated look to their home. As such, sales of products in the mid price point were getting squeezed out of existence. Continue reading Laminate: Is the hourglass still in effect?

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Laminate: Dollars down in category, but volume up

There are pretty much two ways to look at the laminate flooring category in 2010. The optimists will focus on the fact that for the second consecutive year, and in a very tough economic climate, laminate manufacturers moved more square feet of the product than the year prior. Unfortunately, it is happening at the expense of the product’s average selling price. Thus, the category suffered its fourth straight year of declining sales in terms of dollars, although similar to 2009, the dip was only in the 2% range. Continue reading Laminate: Dollars down in category, but volume up

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State of the industry: Laminate hit hard but still has plenty of life left

While every category has been hit hard by the recession and the new attitudes of the consumer as the country slowly recovers from the economic downturn, it seems like laminate has been taking some low blows lately and executives are fighting back, telling FCNews there is plenty of life left in the category going forward. “Low end continues to attract the most volume,” noted Travis Bass, executive vice president of sales and marketing for Kronotex, parent company of Formica. “However, there has definitely been a trend back toward the higher price points with consumer confidence growing.” Continue reading State of the industry: Laminate hit hard but still has plenty of life left

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Surfaces 2011: Laminate mills play it cautious with intros designed to fill gaps

Las Vegas—In years past, it was easy to define the top design and technological trends in the laminate category as most introductions included one or both. But with the recession taking a major toll on the category, manufacturers at Surfaces were all over the board as they focused on rounding out their offerings in anticipation of more consumers opening up their purse strings as the year progresses. Continue reading Surfaces 2011: Laminate mills play it cautious with intros designed to fill gaps

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The art of upselling laminates

It is not uncommon for retail salespeople to shy away from upgrading consumers to higher quality laminate floors. Some may feel compelled to show customers natural materials, such as ceramic and hardwood, which can be had for a few dollars more per square foot and offer higher margins. Others are afraid to risk losing a sale by showing pricier items that stretch a customer’s disposable income to the limit. Continue reading The art of upselling laminates

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Anderson expands into laminate with enhanced finish OptiGuard for strength, realism

FOUNTAIN INN, S.C.—One of the industry’s hardest hit categories during the recession has been laminate, so it would be hard to fathom a company trying to enter the sector now. Don’t tell that to Anderson Hardwood Floors, which threw its hat into the ring with the launch of an extensive program of products and technology designed to distinguish itself from what is in the market and give retailers the chance to once again create sales and earn profits. Continue reading Anderson expands into laminate with enhanced finish OptiGuard for strength, realism

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Shaw introduces new laminate finish

Dalton—Shaw released a new, high-gloss, durable laminate finish the mill has dubbed OptiGuard. Highly scratch resistant and made in the U.S., OptiGuard increases the detail, beauty and realism of Shaw’s laminate floors. To demonstrate the strength and resilience of OptiGuard, Shaw staged a torture test at the company’s laminate manufacturing facility in Ringgold, Ga. in Nov. 2010; Shaw laminate with OptiGuard endured 1,500 passes from an 18, 790-pound forklift. Continue reading Shaw introduces new laminate finish

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Anderson introduces its first-ever laminate collections

Fountain Inn, S.C.—For the first time in company history, Anderson Hardwood Floors introduces three collections of upscale laminate products. The collections, named Essentials, Artisan and Brilliance, feature a variety of styles with a wide array of species and beautiful colors at reasonable prices. Anderson laminates are made in the U.S. with a strong, stable and moisture resistant coreboard with a patented, adhesive-free, locking system on all four sides, so it is quick and easy to install. Continue reading Anderson introduces its first-ever laminate collections