Here at Promoboxx we love local retailers and look for opportunities to highlight their stories. In our latest Retailers Rule interview, we connect with Tom Heffner, owner of About All Floors.
Tom is currently a member of Mohawk’s National Dealer Advisory Council and is well-versed in the flooring industry. Straight out of college he worked for a flooring manufacturer, spent time at the flooring retail cooperative CCA Global Partners, and has been growing his About All Floors business since 2005. About All Floors has two locations in Birdsboro and Wyomissing, PA.
What is a typical day like for you?
My days are hectic! I typically work about 75-80 hours a week on average. You have to wear a lot of hats as a small business owner (accounting, operations, marketing, HR…) A typical day goes in a lot of directions. I try to juggle all those things.
What type of trends do you see happening in the flooring industry?
There is a tremendous amount of consolidation that will continue to take place. Both on the manufacturing and retail sides of the business, large companies are getting bigger and smaller companies are disappearing.
Digital is also transforming the business. Millennials want to shop online and 40% of their flooring purchases in 2016 were made online.
For these reasons we need to change as a company, we need to have a stronger online presence. We’ve hired a local agency to help us with our digital marketing strategy. I think the flooring stores that don’t embrace this digital change, won’t survive.
How do you keep up with industry trends?
Outside of following trade journals, we participate in Mohawk’s Color Center program, which has been a tremendous help to our business. Through the program, we receive support on: consumer financing, credit card processing, Houzz advertising, Yelp ads, Google ads, and of course, content through Promoboxx.
What are your thoughts on the big box chains?
Home Depot, Lowes, Wayfair, and Amazon Home Services are all large retail competitors. Home Depot is our largest competitor and is located about one block from our Wyomissing store. Consumers assume that they have the cheapest price, but this is often not the case.
Amazon Home Services has a goal to sell $1B in flooring by 2020. That’s a lot of flooring. Both flooring manufacturers and retailers need to be thinking about this.
Online providers such as Amazon and Wayfair have the current challenge of professional installation and have asked us to be sub-contractors (to which I said no way!). Handling these materials is a huge challenge, both delivery and installation. With our store, we do it all locally – service, delivery, and installation.
How would you compare paid digital advertising to more traditional advertising channels like radio, TV, etc.?
We still use billboards quite a bit because we can place them strategically in our area.
We’re getting more into digital now, but I know we need to have an online presence to survive and stay relevant in today’s marketplace. The digital world is confusing to me in terms of spend, return, etc. We’re hiring a local agency to help us understand and implement digital strategies.
What has your experience with Promoboxx been like so far?
As a store owner, I find Promoboxx to be a huge time saver! Having professional content ready to go across our digital channels makes us look a lot bigger than we are. We find that the messaging resonates well with our audience. We love the content scheduling feature.
Want to market more effectively through your local retailers?
With Promoboxx, empower your retail partners to promote your professional brand content with ease! The Promoboxx platform is built with your busy store owners in mind – promote brand content within four clicks, ability to schedule posts, optional automatic posting, and ability for retailers to customize posts. View a campaign example >