Al's column: Discounting can actually hurt sales

March 14, 2018 | Comments Off on Al's column: Discounting can actually hurt sales

March 5/12, 2018: Volume 33, Issue 19 By Jerry Levinson   During a recent weekly meeting with my staff, we were discussing ways in which we could improve our closing rate. Normally, there is a sale, special, discount or promotion that we offer our customers. Furthermore, it is common for customers to ask for an additional discount. We role play at our meetings and go through the process of measuring, product selection, establishing what a...

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Al's column: Advantages of lead-gen systems

February 26, 2018 | Comments Off on Al's column: Advantages of lead-gen systems

February 19/26, 2018: Volume 33, Issue 18 By Jason Goldberg   (Second  of two parts) In part I of this article (FCNews, Feb. 5/12), I provided an overview of what constitutes a good lead management system. In this second installment, I will delve into specifics and talk about the advantages such programs offer retailers. Accountability. Managers can now hold their salespeople accountable for tracking their assigned leads. They can calculate their RSAs’ close rates.  Furthermore,...

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Al's column: How to better manage lead generation

February 15, 2018 | Comments Off on Al's column: How to better manage lead generation

February 5/12, 2018: Volume 33, Issue 17 By Jason Goldberg  (First of two parts) It stands to reason that more leads will result in more sales for your company, right? Not so fast. Leads only convert into dollars when they are properly managed by your salespeople, managers and marketing team. Many flooring retailers make the mistake of thinking lead generation is the key to success, so they invest thousands of dollars driving potential customers to...

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Al's column: Learning to better serve your customers

January 25, 2018 | Comments Off on Al's column: Learning to better serve your customers

January 22/29, 2018: Volume 33, Issue 16 By Brian Gracon   There’s likely a huge gap between how you see your business and how your customers see it. Eighty percent of businesses think they provide great customer experiences, but only 8% of customers agree. Maybe we just don’t know what our customers really want, which can be a big problem. When your customers are not happy—even if they are being unreasonable—they now have the power...

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Al's column: Design—Creating desirable living spaces

January 16, 2018 | Comments Off on Al's column: Design—Creating desirable living spaces

January 8/15, 2018: Volume 33, Issue 15 By Bea Pila   The renowned American architect and interior designer Frank Lloyd Wright once said, “Form follows function—that has been misunderstood. Form and function should be joined in spiritual union.” As an interior designer, I am often asked, “What is your style?” I cringe at the question. The word design conjures the notion of a look or aesthetic, but for me it is all about emotion. Growing...

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Al's Column: How to develop a ‘right-sized’ marketing plan

December 19, 2017 | Comments Off on Al's Column: How to develop a ‘right-sized’ marketing plan

December 18/25, 2017: Volume 32, Issue 14 By Jennifer Smiga   (First of two parts) The slick print campaigns and glowing Instagram stories of big brands can make successful marketing feel out of reach, especially when you are running a one-person marketing department for a company, drafting budgets while posting to Facebook in the same day. It could even be soul crushing. If you’re in this position, don’t let it get to you. You can...

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Al's column: The importance of employee retention

December 8, 2017 | Comments Off on Al's column: The importance of employee retention

November 27-December 11, 2017: Volume 32, Issue 13 By Lisbeth Calandrino   A friend of mine was recently fired for having a side business that was in competition with his employer’s. He had developed a reviews-based platform for businesses, but he never took any of his employer’s customers. It was developed simply to have an extra source of income. Does this sound familiar? Early on, he spoke to his boss to explain the type of...

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Al's column: Navigating through tax, legal issues

November 27, 2017 | Comments Off on Al's column: Navigating through tax, legal issues

November 20/27, 2017: Volume 32, Issue 12 By Roman Basi   A client recently asked me if it was necessary to file IRS form 1065 for people who operate as a “small partnership.” This is a question you might be asking yourself if you are one of the many people in this country who operate your business as a partnership. The answer is yes, no and maybe. A simple understanding as to what the IRS...

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Al's column: Maximizing your online presence

November 13, 2017 | Comments Off on Al's column: Maximizing your online presence

November 6/13, 2017: Volume 32, Issue 11 By Jay Flynn   Search-engine optimization. Pay per click. Organic (and paid) social media initiatives. All these elements stand to have a big impact on any online marketing strategy. So the question is: Why aren’t more flooring retailers taking advantage of these tools? They’re not acronyms and strategies to be afraid of but rather embraced. Still, just a mere mention of many of these online strategies makes some...

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Al's Column: Teamwork is the key to success

October 27, 2017 | Comments Off on Al's Column: Teamwork is the key to success

October 23/30, 2017: Volume 32, Issue 10 By Christopher Grubb Many homeowners want to be do-it-yourself designers, but much can get lost in translation. Projects can contain hundreds of details that can easily be misunderstood when a client attempts to verbally describe her wants to the contractor. Having a designer in the mix makes the process go far more smoothly. And when it comes to filling in those important details, a retailer can make the...

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