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LAS VEGAS MARKET

JULY 2012

INSIGHTS FOR TODAY’S HOME FURNISHINGS PROFESSIONAL

NHFA

National Home Furnishings Association

WHFA

Western Home Furnishings Association

SEHFA SHFA

South Eastern Home Furnishings Association

www.RetailerNOWmag.com

Southern Home Furnishings Association


SERVICES • INVENTORY • MERCHANDISING • PRODUCT • TECHNOLOGY • COMMUNITY

FRESHEN UP!

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JULY 11 - 18, 2012

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INSIDE featuresNOW 15.

GenerationNEXT

21.

The New Players in Shopping

22.

Nepotism—Is it killing the industry?

24.

Grow Up & Stop Whining

28.

Meet The Next Gen

See p.2 for more features 

yourVOICE 11.

Roving Reporter

11.

Inspired Reading

12.

Retailer2Retailer

26.

Fresh Perspectives

65.

What’s Selling NOW

68.

Community Today

count onIT Now We’re Talking

06.

A Message from the WHFA President

08.

10.

TechNOW—Inbox

44.

Editor’s Letter

Membership Marketplace See p.2 for more 

on the cover

NEXT 15 Generation Hold your stereotype... Jaime Derringer Cover Photo by: Kate Glicksberg

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11

LAS VEGAS MARKET

35 JULY 30 - AUGUST 3 50

The Shift

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merchandising solutions. ly on MicroD.

STOP iGNORING THE OBVIOUS

e presence and drive

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SCAN & SCRAM GOING SOLO MADE IN USA—WHO CARES?

e Driver’s Seat? Your Furniture Retail Engine Marketing

count onIT

featuresNOW

INSIGHTS FOR TODAY’S HOME FURNISHINGS PROFESSIONAL “THE SHIFT” June Issue

y 30 - August 3 Building C-496

JUNE 2012

RetailerNOW Vol. 1 Issue 2

gas Market

JUNE 2012

m m .2

26

71

30.

Making an Exit

33.

Las Vegas Market Highlights

53.

The Social Wave

56.

Stand Out with Social Media

75.

Quick Fire Marketing

59.

APP“Y” Marketing

76.

The Scoop

78.

Industry Calendar

80.

The Now List

www.RetailerNOWmag.com

Read last month’s issue at: RetailerNOWmag.com

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61.

Is Your Salesperson Ready?

66.

Taking Over

www.retailerNOWmag.com

71. Product Focus Accessories 73.

Money Matters NOW Why GenY Isn’t Buying

The Power of a Check-In


1962 started more collections than just baseball cards Space B-1350

July 30-Aug 2

World Market Center

Las Vegas, Nevada

come see our's The Bellevue Collection

bubblegum not included

Contact your Emerald Home sales representative for an appointment or call 253-922-1400


thePlayers RetailerNOW

What we are so passionate about. . .

To have the courage to pursue purposeful dialogues that challenge conventional thinking, to engage and entertain our readers by delivering content that creates a fervent following ready to change the landscape of our industry.

Q: BURGERS or HOT DOGS?

Melissa Dressler Editor melissa@retailerNOWmag.com

Lisa Tilley Art Director lisa@retailerNOWmag.com

RetailerNOW is the magazine for today’s home furnishings professional. Developed for a specialized community, RetailerNOW brings a unique editorial focus on progressive and relevant issues concerning the home furnishings industry in the retailer’s voice, with a focus on issues impacting retailers NOW.

Hamburger with mustard, ketchup, lettuce, tomato, onion, and pickle

Larry Carroll Account Manager larry@retailerNOWmag.com

Tim Timmons Associate Publisher tim@retailerNOWmag.com

Cindi Williams Business Development cindi@retailerNOWmag.com

Contact Information:

Editorial Collaborators:

Mailing – Editorial:

Andrew Tepperman, Tepperman’s Carol Bell, Contents Interiors Donny Hinton, Colortyme Marty Cramer, Cramer’s Home Furnishings Rick Howard, Sklar Furnishings Burgers Travis Garrish, Forma Furniture

500 Giuseppe Ct., Suite 6 Roseville CA 95678 Mailing – Advertising 3910 Tinsley Drive #101 High Point NC 27265

2012 National Home Furnishings Association Officers Burgers

Online: retailerNOWmag.com Phone: Editorial: (800) 422-3778 Advertising: (800) 888-9590 Social: facebook.com/retailerNOW

Marc Shewel, President, Schewel Furniture, VA Dianne Ray, Chairman, Garden City Furniture, SC Cherie Rose, President Elect, The Rose Collection, CA Rick Howard, Sr. Vice President & Treasurer, FL John Wells III, Sr. Vice President, Wells Home Furnishings, WV

2012 Western Home Furnishings Association Officers Chris Sanders, President, Everton Mattress Factory, ID Valerie Watters, President Elect, Valerie’s Furniture & Accents, AZ Lael Thompson, Broyhill Home Collections, CO Chuck Kill, Treasurer, Bedmart, AZ Tom Slater, Slater’s Home Furnishings, CA

Twitter.com/retailerNOW Pinterest.com/retailerNOW

Southern Home Furnishings Association President:

Robert Dossenbach, Dossenbach’s Finer Furniture, NC

Subscription: $70/year Retailer Now, ISSN# 2166-5249 is published monthly (except March and December) by the Western Home Furnishings Association, 500 Giuseppe Court, Ste 6, Roseville, CA 95678. Application to Mail at the Periodicals Postage Prices is Pending at Roseville, CA and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: please address changes to: RetailerNOW, The Western Home Furnishings Association, 500 Giuseppe Court, Ste 6, Roseville CA 95678. If you would like to stop receiving RetailerNOW, please send an email to unsubscribe@retailerNOWmag.com. If you would like to only receive an electronic version of RetailerNOW, please send an email to gogreen@retailerNOWmag.com. © 2012 National and Western Home Furnishings Associations. Published by the National Home Furnishings Association and Western Home Furnishings Association. Material herein may not be reproduced, copied or reprinted without prior written consent of the publisher. Acceptance of advertising or indication of sponsorship does not imply endorsement of publisher or National and Western Home Furnishings Associations. The views expressed in this publication may not reflect those of the publisher, editor or National Home Furniture Association, Western Home Furnishings Association and Western Retail Services Corp. Content herein is for general information only; readers are encouraged to consult their own attorney, accountant, tax expert and other professionals for specific advice before taking any action.

Southeastern Home Furnishings Association President: Mark Godwin, Hainjes Inc., AL

For a complete Board of Director listing, visit retailerNOWmag.com NHFA Staff Steve DeHaan, NHFA Executive Vice President • (800) 888-9590 x6124 Karin Mayfield, Sr. Director of Membership • (800) 888-9590 x6154 Jordan Boyst, Member Services Rep • (800) 888-9590 x6132 Dianne Therry, Member Services Rep • (800) 888-9590 x6167

WHFA Staff Sharron Bradley, WHFA Executive Director • (916) 960-0345 Karpice Crawford, Membership Director • (916) 960-0346 Mike Hill, Member Services Rep • (916) 960-0263 Buffalo Burgers with Blue Cheese

NHFA

National Home Furnishings Association

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www.retailerNOWmag.com

WHFA

Western Home Furnishings Association

England SEHFA SHFA New Chapter

South Eastern Home Furnishings Association

Southern Home Furnishings Association


...where all your best connections are made. The West’s premier home furnishings marketplace brings it together for you—on-trend product introductions, exclusive suppliers and unique resources—all in one efficient and exciting buying experience. Connect with it all here.

To learn more and register today please visit www.LasVegasMarket.com

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President’s Message

Letters From the Road —A Message from the WHFA President How has business been? Do you know what the percentage of growth or decline is for a particular month? These are common questions I hear asked by furniture retailers and manufacturers during my time on the road. Roller coaster sales curves have challenged our marketing plans and open to buy processes during the last four years. Several established home furnishings, mattress and flooring retailers from all parts of the country have consolidated, engaged in dramatic cost-cutting strategies or terminated operations. When retailers ask questions about growing business or making changes that could help the bottom line, I often ask them, what percentage of the market does your store service? The response in several cases is a guess or “I don’t know”. I’m surprised that the majority of manufacturers are not supplying their clients with this type of extremely helpful data. It is very difficult to determine what advertising, marketing and staffing adjustments you need to make if you don’t know this data. You need to understand what the potential is for a particular region or if there is an upside to business growth; if the customer base is either going to the competition or has migrated to other markets.

Chris Sanders Everton Mattress & Furniture Gallery WHFA President

Several publications are available with this type of demographic data. The one we receive is “The Survey of Buying Power” published by Sales and Marketing Management magazine, which gives us current data by metro area, state and region. The survey also includes statistics such as retail sales by merchandise category, personal disposable income, and five-year projections. Another source is the Buying Power Index (BPI), which identifies these market factors, correlates them with the area’s potential and then combines the factors and their potential into a weighted index. Estimating Market Potential—Do you really know your potential?* BPI Method (BPI x Industry Sales)/100 = Market Potential Quick and Easy Method Industry Sales divided by National Population = Sales/Person Example: Industry Sales $3,300,000,000 / 260,000,000 (National Population) = $12.69 person By Market Population x Sales/Person = Market Potential Example: Chicago Population 7,695,800 Multiplied by Sales/Person x $12.69 Market potential $97,659,702 *All figures are based on the mattress category.

The goals of this exercise are: 1. Discovering the size of your marketplace. 2. Household Incomes: Knowing what the per capita levels are, is important to any business, especially when developing merchandising assortments. 3. Age/Demographics: Knowing who your audience is, and what it takes to reach them, sell to them, etc. To utilize this data, a business exploring new areas of growth would look up a particular region to find out what percentage of the nation’s disposable income is in a particular market, along with the percent of the nation’s retail sales and percent of the population. The BPI for that area would then be calculated, multiplying each factor by a weighted value from a prescribed formula and then adding all three factors together. The result will tell the entity the percentage of total buying power in that area. There will always be variances working with this type of data. Although not completely scientific, it will help us get a better idea of what our market penetration represents, effectiveness and current share. Ask your manufacturing representatives what your trade area should represent with their product and find out if you have a presence within the totals of that the category. What you do with the data is where the real work begins. Remember people drown not because they fall in water, but because they quit swimming. CSanders@evertonmattress.com


Editor’s Message

from the editor

R

eady or not, here they come. Generation Y is infiltrating the world—as consumers, employees and business owners. Spanning approximately 15 years, with the oldest approaching 32 and the youngest about to graduate high school, Generation Y has been criticized for having a sense of entitlement, being lazy, pampered, high-maintenance and lacking self-motivation. Maybe it is because I am an older member of Generation Y, and most of my friends are also in this age group, that I feel these stereotypes paint an unrealistic picture of us. Some of the characteristics that Gen Y is labeled with are things that come with growing up—most 17-year-olds lack motivation. Is it because of their generation, or that they are still a teenager? Yes, there are a few bad seeds that may act that way, but doesn’t every generation have a few bad seeds? What I see is a generation built around entrepreneurs that have big ideas. They are motivated to succeed and many are willing to work hard to get there. That being said, we also appreciate work/life balance. Many of us grew up as latch-key kids and had Baby Boomer parents working 60+ hours a week. Learning from our childhoods, we want to be different in that respect and be present for our families. Melissa Dressler Editor, RetailerNOW

Many in this generation graduated college and went straight into the Great Recession, making finding a job difficult. While I was lucky and found a stable job before the recession hit, many in this generation have had to take whatever jobs were offered to them—they were often beat out of “entry” level positions to people that had years of experience and had to settle for whatever low paying job they could find to survive. Do they think they are entitled to a higher paying job? Yes, they do! Wouldn’t you if you had $40,000 in student loan debt looming over your head and were barely making over minimum wage? In a way, the recession helped spur this generation’s entrepreneurialism—to make more money, many have created their own businesses. I think it will be exciting to see what Generation Y brings—they have already transformed how the world communicates by giving us social media. As the economy improves and these young people are able to get real jobs, the sky’s the limit.

What I’m Loving (916) 960-0385

Melissa@retailerNOWmag.com @retailerNOW

It’s summer time, and all I want to do is spend time outdoors; BBQing and enjoying my patio. I love this Indoor/Outdoor rug from Jaipur’s Barcelona Collection. The bright red/orange color would give my patio a pop of color, and the geometric pattern adds a bit of fun. And who doesn’t like a little fun in the summer? Follow other products I love on my blog and on Pinterest. Blog: www.retailerNOWmag.com www.pinterest.com/retailerNOW

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Tech

TechNOW Hot Tech

Connect with us @ retailerNOWmag.com

Retailers are you using any exciting new tech sites? 800.422.3778

Augmented Reality Augmented Reality has become a new buzzword in the retail arena. Providing users a live, real-world image with elements that are computer-generated, Augmented Reality can bring furniture into the homes of consumers, through a smartphone or tablet. Now consumers can “see” it in their space before buying it.

Hot Sites Visit these hot sites for new ideas, money-saving info, products and fun!

Augmented Reality Lets Shoppers See How New Furniture Would Look At Home

Print Eco: Save paper and reduce ink costs by up to 17% with Print Eco Software. With a click of a mouse, Print Eco instantly optimizes your document, and removes wasted space from badly formatted spreadsheets or webpage ad images—reducing the amount of pages you will print! www.printecosoftware.com ShopInterest: Turns your Pinterest boards into web shops that include an integrated shopping cart experience. Shopinterest.co

Inbox Our Readers Email I have always enjoyed your

magazine, due to the fact that it is the only periodical that talks to the retailer. Your articles on

Made in America did my heart

Put it to Use Retailer Urban Outfitters is reaching out to its younger audience by posting photos of crazy outfit combinations, employees, and new products on Instagram. By doing this, they have developed a community of loyal followers that are eager to “like” or comment on the latest post, and visit their stores to shop!

10

Cool Apps

good. We are the fifth generation full-line, interior design store and have made it through very tough times and are still experiencing them. We have made a

conscience effort to floor mainly

Instagram: It’s photo sharing, reinvented. Snap photos around your store, at Market or out having fun, then share with your followers, and on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest.

made in America manufacturers. I have been seeing exactly what you spoke about in your article; rising importing prices, and

American product being the desire of Asian customers.

Top Tweets:

We are located in Peoria, IL.

@HPMarketNews: What were the top products from the Spring Style Spotters? Find out in the #hpmktcountdown vsb.li/s1GnDn @RetailerNOW: In 2011 consumers spent over $13 billion on home fashion purchases that were made online. Ow.ly/bDEfl Follow us @RetailerNOW

company, so manufacturing is

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The home of Caterpillar tractor watched closely here for the

RedLaser: Your customers are using it to scan products in your showroom. See how this app works by scanning product bar codes and getting instant price comparisons off of Google, eBay, TheFind and Half.com.

www.retailerNOWmag.com

community. Thank you again for your support of reporting the

trends and economic effect that American manufacturing has on America in its entirety.

Kathy Wiesehan Crank Lippmann’s Furniture & Interiors Peoria, Illinois


Your Voice Southeastern Home Furnishings Association Convention

Roving Reporter | SHANE SPILLER, Spiller Furniture, Tuscaloosa, AL

I

have been attending the annual Southeastern Home Furnishings Association (SEHFA) Convention since I was born. So when the SEHFA Convention rolled around this June, in sunny Destin, FL, I was there.

The business relationships that have been established over the years by attending this annual event are simply priceless. One of these special relationships was highlighted when my father and I were able to present a very nice tribute to Stuart Shevin (former NHFA and SEHFA President) from the Alabama State Senate. Stuart recently passed away, but his legacy will continue to live with his family and all those other lives he touched while on this earth. You see, Stuart was my father’s best friend and closest associate in the furniture business. They talked on a daily basis about the business and life in general. Their relationship was strengthened every year by attending the SEHFA convention, and no doubt has had a profound impact on our respective furniture businesses as well.

to working smarter. And who doesn’t want to work smarter? Sign me up for that! And as you can see from the photo, we had a good time dressing up in our disco attire. Who said furniture folks are stuffy?

Other than growing my business relationships at this convention, I was able to gain some knowledge about budgeting for my business and how to better manage my sales team. This information was relayed to us by David Fass, who is a senior business analyst with JRM Sales and Management. David did a wonderful job highlighting several important dash board numbers for my business. Why should I suffer results of my business, when I can engineer outcomes? Budgeting is the key Mike and Shane Spiller

Follow our Roving Reporters’ journeys and check out photos online at www.retailerNOWmag.com.

Inspired Reading The Long Tail

What happens when the bottlenecks that stand between supply and demand in our culture go away and everything becomes available to everyone?

By Chris Anderson

“The Long Tail” is a powerful new force in our economy: the rise of the niche. As the cost of reaching consumers drops dramatically, our markets are shifting from a one-size-fits-all model of mass appeal to one of unlimited variety for unique tastes. From supermarket shelves to advertising agencies, the ability to offer vast choice is changing everything, and causing us to rethink where our markets lie and how to get to them. Unlimited selection is revealing truths about what consumers want and how they want to get it, from DVDs at Netflix to songs on iTunes to advertising on Google.

However, this is not just a virtue of online marketplaces; it is an example of an entirely new economic model for business, one that is just beginning to show its power. After a century of obsessing over the few products at the head of the demand curve, the new economics of distribution allow us to turn our focus to the many more products in the tail, which collectively can create a new market as big as the one we already know. Send your reading recommendation to melissa@retailerNOWmag.com.

Suggested by Bill Napier

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Your Voice

2

Retailer Retailer Q What advice do you have for the next generation of the industry?

Mike Shuel

Meredith Furniture Yakima, WA

Start early—make it your passion and love the work. Get used to people and love that interaction. You must greet people with a great big smile and make people comfortable. Try your best to get along with the older generation as they have traveled the road ahead of you and are making it easier for you. Also be aware of the generation after you, as they are the future for both you and our industry. I have now experienced both sides of the business generational shift and see the importance of each generation. I am the third, my son will be the fourth, and I hope we have a fifth. Each generation is so fragile—just know how rare you are in businesses of all types.

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Tom Olinde

Olinde’s Furniture Baton Rouge, LA

Embrace and be prepared for rapid change. Be passionate. Be flexible. The last couple of decades have seen the advent of fax machines, cell phones, the Internet and social media. The next generation will have to be fluent in a variety of disciplines to successfully compete in the marketplace. Now, more than ever, customers need to be wowed to convince them to frequent your brickand-mortar establishment. You must give them great customer service and exceptional values. You will have to find new ways to reach your customer and keep good foot traffic. Currently, dealers are trying to maximize the benefits of social media and mobile advertising. Who knows what future technologies will have to be employed to excite customers? Your advantage is you will be one of them (the young consumer). Be passionate! Be successful!

www.retailerNOWmag.com

Mike Rudolph

Rudolphs Furniture Butte, MT

Hopefully, the economy and world will keep getting better and be on an upswing. Today’s next generation has a great advantage over the past. You have so much more at your fingertips. Information is NOW! You have experienced what a real, long-term recession/ depression is, so when the economy breaks open you will be at a great advantage. With the Internet, Next Generation-NOW group, membership in any chapter of NHFA, and for those that are in PFD buying group, advice and sharing is at your fingertips. Make sure you use your contacts and affiliates as it is a great advantage... as good as money in the bank. Information from multiple experiences, different people, and every organization you belong to in this industry is priceless!


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GenNEXT

Generation They have given us Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, Yelp, and numerous apps. The next generation is upon us, and quickly changing how we live. But they don’t fit the mold of any stereotype you might have—they are entrepreneurial, dedicated, driven and work hard to succeed. They are the bright minds behind innovative ideas and design. They are the future of the industry … Meet GenerationNEXT.

By Melissa Dressler

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GenNEXT

Andrew Garcia, 25 Local Media Manager, Wayfair Boston, MA wayfair.com

When Andrew isn’t working, he can be found jumping out of a plane! He has over 230 sky dives under his belt.

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B

each balls are flying around, there are no cubicles and every person that passes you looks fresh out of college—no, you didn’t just step into the Facebook office, you are at Wayfair, an eCommerce site that is “everything for your home.” But don’t think it is all just fun and games, with almost 1,000 employees worldwide, the Wayfair team knows how to work hard. This hard work pulled in over $500 million in sales last year and 3 million site visits each week. Wayfair isn’t your typical eCommerce site—they are committed to preserving the local brick-and-mortar retailer and offer their customers the opportunity to “Get it Near Me”. Lead by Andrew Garcia, 25, the Get It Near Me program connects consumers that visit the Wayfair site to a local brick-and-mortar stores to see, touch and purchase products. “We really want to protect the ecosystem of this industry. Yes, we get about 3 million weekly visitors on our site, 90 percent of whom will never buy online. A lot of them are shopping our site because they are looking for inspiration and are aspiring towards a purchase. They trust us. We are now leveraging that www.retailerNOWmag.com

behavior and saying, ‘Hey, we know you won’t buy online, so why don’t you visit our local reputable dealers through the Get It Near Me marketplace’,” he said. Joining Wayfair three years ago, Andrew started at the ground level in customer service. Through his hunger to succeed and savvy business skills, he worked his way up to managing a team of six that work on the Get It Near Me program. “The opportunity to do big things drives me to succeed,” he said. Andrew was one of 12 people handpicked by Wayfair’s top level management to participate in a pilot training session, which had Andrew attending seminars, pitching ideas to company VPs and attending a Business Strategy course at Harvard. “There is a great opportunity to do big things here. The senior management is invested in building the next generation of directors who could be taking over new programs within the company.” Through the challenges that Wayfair has provided Andrew professionally, he has realized that his passion in life is to help others grow. When he was made manager, without much managing experience, he was surprised at the passion he felt for helping his team learn, grow and succeed. “All of a sudden, I had a whole team of folks under me and soon realized that I was really impassioned to take those people and develop their skills more,” he said. “I was lucky enough that I had VPs taking me under their wing and helping me grow. It almost feels like I am passing along the skills I was taught by helping others grow.”


E

very morning, Jaime Derringer, 33, wakes up, takes care of her 7-month-old daughter and hops on her computer to post her latest finds in modern design. Driven in everything she does, Jaime has made a full-time career out of blogging after years of working as a project manager in the pharmaceutical marketing and advertising industry. Along the way, she has educated a million readers about modern design through Design Milk. Jaime started the site in 2006, with the intent of just “bookmarking” her favorite pieces of furniture, décor and artwork to furnish her new townhouse. “At first, I used the blog as a place to store all of the things I was finding on the Internet,” she said. “As I kept digging deeper, I started seeing products that I thought were cool, but that I might not be able to afford or obtain, but I would bookmark them too. This was also around the same time when blogging started to really take off and somehow, people found me, and started reading.” Design Milk was born. Providing readers with a daily dose of Vitamin D (in this case, the D stands for Design), Design Milk’s five to six blog posts each day exposes the consumer to modern and contemporary design and art. “It is a good daily dose of design. It is a fun, silly icon, so we can’t take ourselves too seriously—we are a milk carton! And it is memorable, something you don’t see every day,” Jaime said. Design Milk is not only sharing products they love with others, they are connecting designers, manufacturers and retailers. “Our goal right now is to connect all of those people who are in this food chain so to speak of design; I want to bring them all together,” Jaime added. “We often post student designs and it is great to hear from a student that just had their design picked up by a manufacturer, or sold 100 pieces wholesale to a retailer because they were found on my site. That is what keeps

GenNEXT me going—making connections and networking all of these people together.” Jaime would love to see the connection of designers and retailers go even further, with retailers offering background information to the designer’s products in their store, “I think it would be really nice, and some retailers already do this, but to show the face and name behind the design,” she said. “I am not talking about the mass produced products, but with good, quality pieces that are created in the mind of the designer. It creates a story for the piece and connects the consumer to the piece, and the designer. Designers really deserve more credit for their pieces, and it lets the customer peek behind the curtain and see what inspired the design.” With a growing team of editors and contributors, Jaime and Design Milk continue to find unique and interesting modern designs to share with readers. “Blogging just fell into me,” Jaime adds. “I think the passion for furniture and design has always been there, but I didn’t know it was until I let it free. I have a big passion for this industry.”

Modern Design for Dogs

Jaime Derringer, 33 Founder & Executive Director, Design Milk New Jersey design-milk.com @designmilk

Jaime Derringer Photo by: Kate Glicksberg

Dog Milk

Did you ever think there was modern design for dogs? Well, there is, and the sister site to Design Milk, appropriately named Dog Milk, shares the latest in modern design for your four-legged friends. “We have really loyal readers on this site. It is a close-knit, small community of people that love their dogs,” Jaime added. www.retailerNOWmag.com J U LY | 2 0 1 2

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Amy Albert, 25 Accounts Payable, Pilgrim Furniture City Southington, CT pilgrimfurniturecity.com

When she isn’t working, Amy can be found outdoors playing tennis, golf or kickball.

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ilgrim Furniture City has always been Amy Albert’s home—at 10, she was helping her dad with inventory, in high school, working the front counter. And the Monday after Amy, 25, graduated from the University of Colorado, she was in Connecticut, working in accounts payable at Pilgrim Furniture City. Here analytical eye allows Amy to see mistakes that might have been made while working with the customer. “Being in Accounts Payable, I verify all of the bills, so I see where we are giving things to the customer. I see all of our mistakes. I really try to address our mistakes and see what we could have done better to solve the customer’s problems in the first place,” she said. Not only does she have a detailed eye for finding mistakes, Amy is working on improving processes within Pilgrim Furniture City—finding ways to improve upon what they are doing right and wrong. One area she is really focusing on is making their computer software system processes more efficient. “We have been attending webinars hosted by PROFITsystems to learn the new processes,” Amy said. “Twenty years ago we started using the system and there was only one way to do things. As the software was updated, we didn’t keep up with their recommended way to use it. So now we are going back through the training, using the system properly and becoming more efficient.” www.retailerNOWmag.com

Being ambitious and always looking for a great challenge, Amy loves the idea that she has the ability to make things change and make an impact at Pilgrim Furniture City. After she graduated, she was able to talk to her dad and convince him that they needed to update their website. “It was very bad, about 10 static pictures, our store hours, a little bit of information about us,” Amy added. “My dad was on the same page, so we found FurnitureDealer.net, which has been a tremendous asset for us. We now have people thinking we are a national store because we have such a great presence on the Internet.” Pilgrim Furniture City already offers customers a unique in-store shopping experience that includes areas for kids to play on carousels from Argentina or watch movies in the theater while parents shop. They are also eco-friendly, installing over 1,500 solar panels on the roof of their Milford location. Amy hopes to continue creating unique experiences for shoppers, and work her way up to one day owning the business. “I think we will continue to grow, perfect our processes and continue on the path we are on,” she said. “My plan would be to work my way up, and eventually become owner once my dad retires.”


Lee Beatrous, 25 Manager of Product Design Groovystuff Dallas, TX groovystuff.com

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s a kid growing up in rural North Carolina, Lee Beatrous, 25, would find fallen tree limbs and create furniture out of them. Influenced by his artist mom, from an early age Lee was exposed to art and fashion.  In high school, he started taking woodworking classes, and on the weekends, his dad would help him build furniture. Little did he know that this would lead to a career designing furniture for Groovystuff. Lee entered Appalachian State University chasing a Marketing Degree—and soon realized that was not the path for him. Realizing that his real passion was for design, he quickly changed majors to Industrial Design. “Even at that time, I never thought I would end up designing furniture,” he added. “I saw myself doing something else and creating furniture as a hobby. I never saw it as a career that I could chase.” During his senior year, a new professor, Richard Prisco, was added to the Industrial Design department and had been working with Chris Bruning, owner of Groovystuff, on a project that would have students designing pieces to be shown during the Fall High Point Market. Each student was to design a piece of furniture and present it to industry professionals during the show. “I won the popular vote during Market,” Lee said. “From that point, I reached out to Chris and told him that I was

This young 25-year-old describes himself as ubiquitous, instrumental, steezy (style with ease), crisp and decisive. interested in doing an internship. He had to toy with the idea for a while because he had never had an intern before. I did my internship over the summer, and at the end of it, he offered me a full time position. I essentially created my own job and established myself as a necessity to the company.” Visual in nature, Lee’s design process involves looking at different imagery for inspiration. He will then sketch out hundreds of designs, which might all look the same to the average person, but it allows Lee to get the perfect form he is looking for before moving into CAD to finalize the design. He has found that designing pieces for Groovystuff takes on a different design process. Since he is often working with reclaimed wood and materials, most of his inspiration comes from seeing the material he will be working with. “A lot of my designs and inspiration are pulled from the parts we work with. I see something that inspires me, and I start sketching,” he said. Dedicated to his work, Lee often feels like he is working 24/7. When

he hasn’t been designing for work, he has been sketching furniture ideas for his future home. “I am really focused on buying a house right now,” he said. “I always had a plan that I would live in a big city, and it is exciting to see that I am following my plan and reaching my goals.”

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GenNEXT

The New Players in Shopping By Melissa Dressler

Shopping doesn’t just happen in the store—it is now rapidly growing online & incorporating an element of fun. Olioboard

PureHome sample color palette

It all starts with color—PureHome helps the consumer make the connection between color, furniture and her lifestyle. When a user first visits the site, she is walked through a series of visual questions to see what colors and styles she identifies with the most. The site then develops a color palette for the customer which she can mix and match in different styled rooms (e.g. Arts and Crafts, Old World, Shabby Chic). “PureHome helps solve a woman’s number one problem in the home design process, ‘What color should I select’,” said PureHome CEO Barry Abraham. With her color and style palette next to her, the user can then create a design board of suggested products that fit her style profile. Once she finds a product she truly loves, she can easily find out where to purchase it in her local market—or directly through the PureHome site. “Home décor needs local retailers,” Barry added. “PureHome directs customers to the local retailer through our CAMp [Curated Affiliate Marketplace] program. If there are no local retailers participating in the CAMp program with that product, then she can buy it through our site.” PureHome’s CAMp program allows retailers to always have an “open” sign, without having to build an eCommerce site for their business. Instead, the customer can create a room of her dreams (at any time of the day), and then visit your store the next day to purchase it.

79,661* members have discovered the power, and enjoyment, of playing while they shop. Olioboard’s mood board creator has users creating dream rooms with real products, and then sharing them on other social media channels like Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter. Olioboard’s simple drag and drop interface let’s users place products directly into a room (users can even upload a photo of the room they are trying to furnish to really see how it will look). “It creates a more confident feeling with the consumer. They feel better about handing over their credit card when they can see it and know they are going to like it,” said Olioboard co-founder, Sheilah MacSporran. When a user is ready to purchase her room creation, she easily clicks on a “Shop It” button and is directed to the retailer’s website. The customer then buys straight from the retailer. Manufacturers are showing great interest in this digital room designer and Sheilah and her team are working to incorporate more manufacturer brands while still protecting the brick-and-mortar retailer. “Instead of having a “Shop It” button on some products, it will say “Source Product” or “Get Information”. The user will be directed to a page that lists all of the different brick-and-mortar stores in their area—it is helping the manufacturer get more of their product line out there but helping the brick-and-mortar retailer so they don’t get cut out of the deal,” she said. Another option for retailers is the opportunity to “white label” the Olioboard mood board. “If a retailer wanted to have the Olioboard mood board creator on their site, we can now offer it for a monthly fee,” Sheilah added. “At that point, we would skin our platform to match their brand, scale it to fit within their site and then users can come to their site to create their ideal room designs using only that brand’s products.” “We give customers the chance to try it before they buy it. It becomes a fun experience when you are playing around with these product lines and you are able to enjoy the shopping process even more—which makes for a happy customer,” Sheilah added.

For more information on PureHome and the CAMp program, visit www.purehome.com.

For more information on Olioboard, visit www.olioboard.com. *Number as of press time.

Last month we introduced a new consumer shopping habit of social shopping. Here is a closer look at two new sites that are connecting shopping, fun and furniture. PureHome

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Feature

Killing the Industry or Your Competitive Advantage? By Dr. Samantha Kurtz

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omeone recently posed a very intriguing question; they wondered if nepotism was possibly stifling the furniture industry? I realized as soon as I heard the query that I had never really thought about nepotism from a broader industry perspective. I immediately started mulling over its place in other industries with which I am familiar from a consulting standpoint, and I came to a rather startling conclusion: it could actually end up being the furniture industry’s saving grace. When you look at the prevalence of nepotism in the American workplace, you have to wonder why it is so often thought of negatively. Nearly 95 percent of American businesses are familyowned or controlled. Ranging in size from twoperson partnerships to Fortune 500 companies,

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these businesses contribute about half of our nation’s Gross Domestic Product, and account for approximately 80 percent of the people employed. Those facts being what they are, the question is obviously not whether to “‘nepotate’ or not to ‘nepotate’ ” but rather how to do so effectively. We are all probably familiar with the standard succession advice which has been circulating for years such as bringing a relative into your organization at a lower level first so they can prove their worth and distinguish themselves in the eyes of non-related personnel, that you need to be twice as hard on your relatives as their non-related counterparts in order to avert feelings of favoritism, and that those relatives need to be thrice as humble in attitude in order to not be viewed and resented as the company “brat”.


Feature

But those well-grounded common-sense suggestions are merely the tip of the proverbial nepotism iceberg. What has the ability to sink your “nepotic” organizational boat is far deeper than the seemingly simple machinations of the way you introduce your kinfolk to the rest of the crew. Although those are certainly important elements to cover in order to prevent degenerating morale of your staff to the point of possible mutiny, the real impact of expertly navigating the situation extends far beyond the insular borders of singular furniture operation productivity. There are other industries, similar to furniture, which anchored their foundations in family ownership that can serve as a model of how to use nepotism to your greater competitive advantage. The auto industry immediately springs to mind. Fifteen years ago a quiet revolution began in that industry which would alter the auto retailing landscape forevermore: the first car dealership groups became public companies, selling shares and listing their financial results for all to see. Up until that time the dealership universe was comprised mostly of a closed club of family franchises. Not surprisingly, the old-line dealers self-protectively railed against the public groups, warning that they were out of touch with local communities which would ultimately imperil accountability and sensitivity to consumer needs. They worriedly whispered to themselves that as the public groups grew, they would use their increased buying power to extract volume discounts from manufacturers, using economies of scale unavailable to the average dealer which would eventually lead to decreased consumer leverage as a result of “mega-group” monopolization (not unlike today’s phone carriers). Due to its “Good-Ole-Boy” culture, the auto industry has never been noted for its flexibility or farsightedness (sound hauntingly familiar?), and the family dealers rigorously attempted

to stem the tide of the corporate “takeover” by hiring expensive lobbyists to try to secure protection of their business interests through the adoption of stricter state franchise laws. But they ultimately lost their battle to maintain their precious status quo and were forced to find more innovative ways to retail their goods that have resulted in improved profitability and controlled costs. You’ve actually witnessed evidence of this transformation of strategy, probably without realizing it. Local auto dealers have started replacing the typical “scream and shout” of this month’s deal with increased advertisement of their family’s longevity in the community. They are emphasizing ways of creating an extension of nepotism— literally bringing in the consumer to join their family—by offering life-time extended dealership warranties, discounts for servicing the vehicles of members of the consumer’s friends/family circle, percentages of service dollars applied to future sales, and familial multi-car purchase discounts, etc. And as you travel about in your community you will see their amplified presence through sponsorship of sports teams, local events, and the like.

This approach far exceeds psychologically sophomoric surface tweeting or pretty pictures placed on a Facebook page. This is a methodology which results in a longer-standing more meaningful interpersonal relationship with the consumer, where the longevity of a family business in the community—the nepotism of the company, if you will—is extended to the consumer as a highly personal asset. It’s the type of approach which is not able to be replicated by the “big boys” because their organizational structures require they move huge numbers of units to maintain margin and increase shareholder value. No time to throw community picnics with those daunting productivity demands looming large. The lesson to be learned from the auto dealerships is that they took far too long to use the inherent power of their family community connections to create local consumer fidelity. They dragged their feet hoping to delay having to do the work and take the risk of creating inventive rewards for “family” loyalty, and regrettably paid the price of a ton of lost profit and goodwill in the form of allowing the “industry giants” to gain an even greater neighborhood foothold. So the question you really need to ask yourself when it comes to nepotism in your organization is: How will you best use it to create community solidity long in advance of the furniture giants coming to capture your beanstalk? For the prevailing winds of the industry indicate it’s just a matter of time until you see their incredible hulk rising up across the street from you. Dr. Samantha Kurtz is an organizational consultant who has helped a myriad of home furnishing retailers grow their business. Dr. Kurtz specializes in structuring services based on verified psychological principles of human behavior. You may reach her at skurtz@peoplelution. biz or by phone at (703) 965-0813. www.retailerNOWmag.com J U LY | 2 0 1 2

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GenNEXT

GROW Up—

Stop Whining & Work Advice from Someone that is Knee Deep in the Process By Chris Sanders

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common event that I have witnessed during my tenure as a supplier and as a retailer is the younger generation, in some instances, is pushing too hard and too fast to gain control without really having the substance or understanding the fundamentals. My advice to this: in order to run a business you must first understand it.

I was recently reminiscing as I drove along the South Fork of the Clearwater River in Central Idaho, about a prior conversation I had with a retailer located in the area. He shared some of the highs and lows of taking over the family business, as well as a few points that his father had expressed: Always be the first to work and the last to leave, always show the maximum amount of effort needed no matter the task, and gain the respect of the people you work with. Although this may seem simple in nature, following these fundamentals could ease some of the transitional pains that are found with next generation successions. Let’s face it, succession strategies can be stressful, uncomfortable, awkward, emotional and sometimes split families and employees into warring parties. Understand that succession is a process; it isn’t going to happen overnight. And just because you finished business school, you are not automatically entitled to be the new Chief Executive Officer. Business school doesn’t teach you everything! So stop whining that you haven’t been handed over the family business and work in it first. Your degree will only get you so far, you need to learn through firsthand experience—and you must have these experiences to eventually lead a successful business. Most schools don’t spend enough time on the subject of cash flow, because from my experience, most college professors don’t have any real world experience! Cash is a vital component of your business—if you are out of cash, you are out of business. Do you know how much 24

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cash you receive from profits; cash generated from accounts receivable? Is the company in a good cash position to take discounts from your suppliers? Most young people don’t have a clue about cash and end up spending more money than they have without planning or establishing a budget. I have personally seen this ruin many families and new businesses. Another thing they don’t teach in school: You need a relationship with your bank. The last few years should have been a huge wake up call to our industry—the results of a bank suddenly leaving and providing short-term to little notice was catastrophic to many in our industry. For those of you who may have still been in school during the 2008-2010 crash, learn the answers to these questions: How healthy is your relationship with your company bank/banker? What is your short and long-term debt management strategy? Do you have a plan for notes payable? Do you have a line of credit set up to cover times of slow sales? Establishing a sufficient line of credit with a local bank is imperative to your business plan. As an incoming retailer, you need to learn the codependencies of your company’s departments, understand the positions of your co-workers, and understand the philosophies of adjusting the dashboards of your company. These tasks on paper might come across rudimentary but the fact is that you need to know how they function in order to continue with your vertical career path. Only then will you be ready to start the take over. Last piece of advice for all: Mistakes will be made along the way. Learning how to embrace failure, learning from past mistakes and mistakes of others will also define your abilities as a good, or even great, manager. Chris Sanders put himself through college by working at an open pit copper mine in Butte, MT. After graduation, he joined the furniture industry—starting as a delivery driver and worked his way up to sales and buyer. Today, he is in the middle of the succession process as a partner with Everton Mattress in Twin Falls, Idaho.

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By Noah Tepperman, Tepperman’s

THE ELEPHANT in the room


Fresh Perspectives

Retailers like to complain. We take to it as easily as breathing, and there’s always something to gripe about: recruitment challenges; currency fixing; taxes; our customers; the economy (that old chestnut). I’m allowed to say it—I too live in that glass house. The irony is that our whining is also something of a privilege. We’re lucky to be able to complain. Like breathing, it’s a sign we’re still alive.

the only thing you’d hear us retailers talk about at any of the industry shows, seminars or conferences where we gather throughout the year—and it should be. Instead, we all seem to be pulling our hair out over something completely different: social media (SM).

There does seem to be one exception. It’s a problem only the lucky and successful businesses have, yet you’ll rarely hear us complain about it because like the proverbial elephant in the room, we’re too busy pretending it’s not there! I’m referring to the elephant called succession planning.

A little over a year ago I was in a plenary session at such a conference, where the speaker was the SM expert Erik Qualman. During his Q&A session I heard three or four retailers ask Mr. Qualman his opinion as to who should handle SM in their businesses, and while they didn’t say so out loud, the subtext of the question was clear: “… and please don’t say it should be me!” I was stunned: these successful retailers were suddenly deathly afraid of talking to their customers because of Twitter!

My brother Andrew and I generally consider ourselves to be fortunate, but in this area we’re not just lucky—we’re the luckiest of the lucky. For 87 years the business my grandfather founded in 1925 has endured. It survived the unplanned succession caused by my grandfather’s drowning in 1970, as well as the sudden, unplanned retirement of his successor, my great uncle Harry, one year later (due to health issues). As I said… lucky. The real luck was that our dad learned his lessons: that despite his plans or wishes, life can (will) happen; that the best way to survive the worst is to plan for it; and that the successful plan would therefore ultimately require his own exit. That’s why, in 2006 with the retirement of second generation president Bill Tepperman and the promotion of third generation Andrew Tepperman into the role, we were able to publicly implement the results of a 3-year planning process. We’re familiar with the (grim) statistics on family businesses and intergenerational transfers. That’s also why we’ve got a plan (and why we’re going to keep our fingers crossed… just in case!). Faced with a challenge like succession planning, one might reasonably assume that it would be

Author’s note: If that seems like a non sequitur, you’re right, but there it is. That’s one of the things I love about this business. The challenges are varied and unpredictable, sometimes it just doesn’t make any sense, but it sure never gets boring!

As an industry I know we’re obsessed with benchmarks and best practices. That’s one reason why those of us who are still around are, well, still around. Yet when it comes to social media, all we can focus on is the teenage demonstration of time suck—instead of identifying how successfully, productive people are personally using Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, or YouTube. If this is how our generation of independent home furnishings retailers is going to approach technology, we’re in big trouble! One thing that’s certain is that this business is about more than selling furniture. Ours is a communication business where our customers drive the conversation and we facilitate, and the goal is to help our customers reach a personalized solution. Our success is predicated on our ability to listen to our customers, set expectations, identify their challenges and needs, and provide the necessary education so that they can make the best possible choice.

I can’t tell you if Tepperman’s will last another generation— but if you follow me on Twitter and Like our Facebook page, I’ll keep you posted.

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GenNEXT

Meet Your Next Customer, Employee…

Gen Y & Z enter the scene ENTREPRENEURIAL COLLABORATIVE SOCIAL CONFIDENT DIVERSE

Meet Gen Y: Born from 1980-1995 91% make their Facebook Places and Foursquare check-ins public. (MobileYouth)

Generation Y is more ethnically and racially diverse than older generations, with people of varying ethnicities making up about 40% of our population.

48% of Millennials who say wordof-mouth influences their product purchases more than TV ads. Only 17% said a TV ad prompted them to buy

By 2017, Gen Y will eclipse Boomers in spending power.

(Intrepid Study 2010)

11% of Millennials have boomeranged back to their parents house after graduating from college because of the recession (Pew Study 2010)

Generation-Y spends at least three hours online each day (this doesn’t include time on smartphones)

32 the age of the oldest Millennials in 2012

Gen Y’s annual spending power exceeds $200 billion and they also influence another $50 billion in purchases.

71% report having liked a brand on Facebook just to receive an offer

37% of those ages 18-29 were unemployed in 2011 (Pew Study 2010)

(MobileYouth)

Plagued with high levels of student debt.

34% of women now have bachelor’s degrees, compared to 27% of men (U.S. Census Bureau 2011) 28

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… or Boss Meet Gen Z: Born from 1996-2004* They are tech savvy at an early age—learning to read on iPads and Kindles.

When they think of Foursquare, they think of the social media site, not the playground game.

Smaller than Generation Y

SOCIALLY CONSCIOUS MULTI-TASKERS INDEPENDENT GLOBALLY AWARE CONNECTED

Always connected, communicating through social networking channels, across countries & cultures which significantly influences their decision process Their parents are mostly Gen X’ers, which means their parents are generally older and more likely to be divorced. Adept at multi-tasking—they can text, read, watch, talk and even eat simultaneously.

Generation Z only knows of a world with the Internet.

*This is an approximate date range as Generation Y and Generation Z do overlap. Younger members of Gen Y will often reflect similar characteristics to older members of Gen Z.

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5:42 PM


GenNEXT

MAKING AN EXIT While there are thousands of options for leaving a business, there are truly only two ways to exit: the right way and the wrong way. Establishing a plan early on will help you make the best decisions. By Heidi Hjerpe

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any small business owners work their entire lives building their businesses. Still, many don’t have a good plan when it comes time to make their exit. Business owners are busy running day-to-day operations and, for many, their identity is so closely tied to their business that it’s too difficult to imagine leaving. For those reasons, many haven’t prepared for—or even contemplated—their exit. But not planning for the inevitable, experts say, comes with a wealth of risks, especially in a soft economy. “Many small business owners are very uncertain about their futures for a lot of reasons,” says John Brown, CEO and coRetailer’s owner of Business Enterprise Comment Institute Inc., a Golden, CO, organization that trains business Succession planning advisers in small business exit = Map making. I “If the owner is over 50, we ask them: How long do you want planning. “People should plan love road maps! to work? How much money do you need to live comfortably when things are uncertain.” in retirement? Who will you want to take over the business While growing up, I To preserve your options and upon your exit?” Brown says. would always love to equity, remember that time is Selling your business to a third party or transferring it to a of the essence: Don’t wait until read road maps. A family member are both popular exit strategies, but there succession plan is truly you’re ready to leave to start are limitless options once you get down to the finer details. exit planning. No matter how a road map for your “Working with so many small and mid-sized business owners long you’ve been running your over the years, I have helped plan thousands of paths for business. If you don’t business, start mapping out exiting a business,” Brown says. your succession now to secure a know where you are successful and profitable future. Along with defining their goals, owners also should consider going, then any road Here’s our step-by-step guide to their timeframe and long-term financial objectives. Assemble will take you there. a list of potential buyers, including family members, internal achieving your goals. —Shane Spiller, candidates and third parties, who may have an interest Spiller Furniture Stores, Step 1: Define Your in taking over the business. Carol Roth, an investment Tuscaloosa, AL Objectives banker, business strategist and author of The Entrepreneur Equation, says it’s never too soon to start identifying possible The best place to start is to plot successors. a roadmap. Ask yourself: “After all of the effort I’ve put into building my business, what will I ultimately be looking “Engaging in this process early on, maybe five to 10 years to get out of it?” Once you’ve answered that, factors like before you are ready to exit, can help you to see your options, retirement age, family considerations and specific financial identify and resolve problems, get your business in order and goals emerge. 30

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ultimately maximize its value,” Roth says.

Step 2: Bring In the Experts Small businesses are like snowflakes: no two are alike. That’s why you shouldn’t rely solely on what you’ve heard from friends, relatives and colleagues about the best way to prepare for a sale. This is a job for the professionals, accountants and lawyers you trust who can give you objective advice. “Business owners have their own philosophy, clients and culture. Their succession plan can be tailored to reflect that,” says Evangeline Gomez, a New Jersey-based attorney who focuses on family and small business law. In addition to hiring an attorney, it may be helpful to hire a financial planner or other investment expert who can offer advice about how a sale can affect both your business and family, including the tax implications. “Advisers can help you look at and be

thinking about the bigger picture; not just your personal goals, but about the economy and your timeframe, as well,” Roth says. “They can tell you, for example, if delaying the sale of your business by six to nine months will make for a better strategy.” In preparation for sit-downs with your legal and financial team, Gomez says it’s never too early for small business owners to start assembling and updating documentation such as buy/sell agreements, certificate of incorporation, articles, operating agreements, shareholder agreements, stockholder agreements and any other relevant documents, to make sure they are up to date.

Step 3: Structure Your Operations Potential buyers need to know they’re making a good decision by purchasing your business. That may mean building and diversifying your client base, creating a formal management

structure or putting another person in charge to demonstrate to interested parties that the business can be successful without your leadership. Brown stresses this final point is critical to making a convincing pitch to suitors. “Create and implement a viable transition plan and team of people to show [potential buyers] the business can continue to operate without the [original] owner,” he says. Motivating employees to remain with the company after a sale is also important, so take care of key team members who may quit or look for substantial additional money if they suspect a forthcoming sale. “Try to put in place incentives like a bonus program today to keep employees happy and avoid these kinds of issues,” Roth says. Another important factor when exiting is the numbers. When you run a private company, you typically try to

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minimize taxes. However, just before you exit, you typically want to show more profits on your tax return, Roth says. “Maybe part of your strategy will be to stop certain expenses that aren’t vital to your business—such as outof-state conferences that are more like vacations—for two years prior to the sale,” she says. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, show potential buyers the money. Roth advises her clients to set at least a threeyear horizon for buttoning up a small business’ finances before a sale. Work with your team of experts to cast your company’s bottom line in the most favorable light.

Step 4: Close the Deal Small businesses usually change hands in one of three ways, according to a 2010 Business Enterprise Institute survey: third-party sales, family transfers and employee purchases. Each transaction is a different animal, requiring a different set of considerations for small business owners. Here’s a rundown:

Selling to a Third Party

to having accurate and documented financial reporting and inventory control; a strong management team in place; good, documented process systems (i.e. a “systematized” business); and a written, long-standing business plan that demonstrates the seller has met his [or her] own goals over that period of time.” For small businesses with less than $1 million in cash flow, it’s difficult to find a professional buyer, such as a private equity firm, Roth says. A more likely buyer is a competitor or individual, the latter of whom may have less cash on hand, or limited access to financing, she says. However, the seller can provide financing, usually structured as debt. “This debt could be secured by the business—which has risks if the buyer doesn’t do a good job managing the business—or other assets owned by the buyer, or both,” Roth says. For small business owners in this situation, “the best option might be to sell to employees or transfer the business to a family member,” Brown says.

Selling to Family Members

The amount of cash received is the While perhaps the most rewarding, main factor when selling to a third family businesses offer unique party. According to Roth and Brown, complications when it comes time to despite the bleak economy, there’s a sell. As family business owners will bright spot in the market for businesses tell you, interpersonal baggage can worth at least $1 million to $2 million: often get in the way of making the best Banks will still make loans to purchase financial decisions. these mid-sized businesses, making it a “Some small [family] businesses can good time for sellers and buyers alike. overcome these obstacles, but it is “It is a very robust market at that price difficult to do so because it requires point,” Roth says. “Private equity them to separate objective business firms want to put capital to work, and decisions from subjective family right now, the rates are low for debt considerations,” Brown says. financing. It is a great time to sell if During this process, first determine you are at least in the $1 million to $2 whether there is even a suitable million range.” and willing successor in the family, These days, buyers will usually pay cash whether it’s a child, spouse, sibling or for any business with at least $2 million other relative. Owners should assess a in cash flow. (Buyers can’t borrow as possible successor’s competency and much as they used to.) The fact is, you interest in taking over the business. can never time the market exactly “They need to take the name off the right, and while buyers are more riskrésumé and ask themselves: Does this conscious than ever, a seller can take person have the core competencies to steps to bolster buyer confidence. run this company? [If not,] can they “The seller needs to be well-prepared get them? Can you train them?” Roth to sell,” Brown says. “This translates 32

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www.retailerNOWmag.com

says. “Ask the [family member] and yourself if this is a good fit, and be objective. If your [family member] is not passionate about the business, then it might not be the best decision.”

Selling to Employees or Partners Small businesses worth less than $1 million are often sold to longtime employees or partners, and the arrangement can work well for owners. After all, your employees and partners already know the business, Roth says, and you may not have to sell them as hard as you would an outside buyer. These days, however, the road to employee ownership is filled with obstacles. Again, finding a lender who’s willing to back a business sale to an individual can be difficult, if not impossible. One way is for the owner to sell only a small, non-controlling part of the business at a time to the insider, keeping control of the business during the entire sale process until the owner has received the entire purchase price, Brown says. The length of such a process varies considerably from business to business. Another option to sell to employees is employee stock ownership plans, or ESOPs. ESOPs deduct wages from employees’ paychecks in exchange for stock or give them opportunities to purchase stock in the company— or a combination of these. These transactions can be complicated though, so it’s best to consult experts before proceeding. One final exit route is worker cooperatives, an arrangement in which a group of employees buy the business together. This plan requires enough workers interested in business ownership. Plus, the business is ultimately run as a democracy, which may impede its success, Roth says. Do you have an exit plan in place? Continue the conversation online: www.retailerNOWmag.com. This article originally appeared in the February/March 2012 issue of MyBusiness magazine. Reprinted with permission of the National Federation of Independent Business, copyright 2012. All rights reserved.


RRC

Market Highlight

RETAILER

summer

RESOURCE CENTER

Western Home Furnishings Association National Home Furnishings Association

All Retailers Welcome

The Retailer Resource Center Buyer’s Club • Seminars • Resource Marketplace

C-496

it all

st

a

here s t r

NOT A MEMBER? WANT $100 CASH? JOIN AT MARKET

Your ASSOCIATION Western Home Furnishings Association • www.WHFA.org • 800-422-3778 National Home Furnishings Association • www.NHFA.org • 800-888-9590


Bringing together the Next Generation of Home Furnishings Professionals Tech Savvy & Tuned in—working

together to develop its next group of industry leaders, Next Generation-NOW provides professional development, networking and hosted forums to give a voice to the unique needs of young furniture professionals.

Join the group. Join the discussion • How to grow your business • Connect with and learn from successful retailers • Utilizing technology in business www.ngnow.org | social.ngnow.org

Next Generation-NOW is a hosted community of the National & Western Home Furnishings Associations.

C

onnect

Breakfast & Best Ideas

@

M

arket

Chatter over cocktails

NGN Huddles

Tuesday, July 31

Tuesday, July 31

Open every day

7:30-9:00 a.m.

5:00-6:00 p.m.

The Social Spot

RRC, C-496

One-Six Club, Building B, 16th Floor

RRC, C-496

Join Next Generation-NOW for breakfast and best ideas. Grab a gourmet waffle and then head to a designated NGN table to share, chat and learn from other members.

Speed networking, mentoring from an industry veteran, cocktails, hors d’ oeuvres and more!

facebook.com/NextGenNow

Sponsored in part by:

RRC RETAILER

RESOURCE CENTER

Western Home Furnishings Association National Home Furnishings Association

Need a home base at Market? The Social Spot inside the Retailer Resource Center is the place for NGN members to huddle up with peers, check out new technology or just check out.


Market Highlight

RRC

Location C-496

RETAILER

RESOURCE CENTER

Western Home Furnishings Association National Home Furnishings Association

Compliments of Your Association

MONDAY JULY 30

WEDNESDAY AUGUST 1

9:00 - 10:00 a.m. How to Sell Value Instead of Price?

9:00 - 10:00 a.m. Everything Social for Brick & Morter

Philip Gutsell, GutSELL & Associates

10:30 - 11:30 p.m. What the Bleep do I Say

on Facebook?

Crystal Viklaitis, SnapRetail

12:30 - 1:30 p.m. Delegate unto Others or They will

Delegate unto You

Joe Milevsky, JRM Sales & Management

2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Stop Whining & STEP IT UP!

Brad Huisken, IAS Training

Retailers and the Brands They Carry

Bill Napier, Social4Retail

10:30 - 11:30 p.m. A Perfect Match: Integrating Social Media

& Email Marketing to Increase Foot Traffic

Crystal Viklaitis, SnapRetail

12:30 - 1:30 p.m. How Can We Turn the Web Price War into the

Full Service Full Margin Local Store Web?

Andy Bernstein, FurnitureDealer.net

2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Calculating Actual Delivery Costs

3:30 - 4:30 p.m. Building a Successful CRM for

Your Retail Business

Stu Greene, STORIS Management Systems

TUESDAY JULY 31 9:00 - 10:00 a.m. New Trends in Store Design

Martin Roberts, Martin Roberts Design, LLC

Kevin Truett, Speedy Delivery

3:30 - 4:30 p.m. Literally Improve Your Bottom Line Overnight

Dr. Samantha Kurtz, PeopleLution

THURSDAY AUGUST 2 9:00 - 10:00 a.m. Perfect Delivery Every Time

John McCloskey, Profitability Consulting Group

10:30 - 11:30 p.m. Are you in the Driver’s Seat? Directing 10:30 - 11:30 p.m. Merchandising Your Store in Today’s Ever Traffic to Your Retail Site with Search

Engine Marketing (SEM)

Meghan Wier, MicroD, Inc.

Changing Business Climate

Bob Moorman, JRM Sales & Management

12:30 - 1:30 p.m. Don’t Sell, Help them Buy!

John Egger, Profitability Consulting Group

2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Special Event Campaigns

Ron Cooper, Profit Managment Promotions

3:30 - 4:30 p.m. Building Business through Social Media

Nicole Johnson, GE Capital

it’s where you belong

Sponsored by: NHFA

National Home Furnishings Association

WHFA

Western Home Furnishings Association

NHFA

National Home Furnishings Association

WHFA

Western Home Furnishings Association


RRC RETAILER

RESOURCE CENTER

Western Home Furnishings Association National Home Furnishings Association

Monday, JULY 30, 2012

9:00 - 10:00 a.m.

2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Stop Whining & STEP IT UP!

How to Sell Value Instead of Price?

Brad Huisken, IAS Training

Philip Gutsell, GutSELL & Associates

Furniture retailers can no longer sit back and wait for things to happen. With the competition increasing from the mass merchandisers, other retailers, the Internet, catalogs, and other areas where customers can spend their disposable income, retailers today have to learn how to sell themselves and the store. Attend this session and learn the 25 most powerful ways to maximize your sales. Details on how salespeople can help “brand” the store, telephone campaigns, the three responsibilities of a salesperson, handling objections, company stories, customer follow-up, analyzing lost sales and much more.

With and without the advent of social media shopping, competing on price is increasingly becoming a race to the bottom. Most salespeople are ill equipped to deal with these challenges, especially the average to below-average performers. They end up competing only on price instead of establishing value. If they understood Phil Gutsell’s Value Creation Formula offered in this seminar, they would close more often with larger average tickets. The net result: more volume, more margin and most importantly, more enduring customer relationships.

10:30 - 11:30 a.m. What the Bleep do I Say on Facebook? Crystal Viklaitis, SnapRetail

Does Facebook have you feeling lost? Frustrated over what to say to your customers? SnapRetail is here to help. In this session you’ll learn what content to post and the best time to post it in order to get the most engagement on your page. Worried you don’t have time in your busy schedule for Facebook? We’ve got that covered too, with some time saving tips you can use daily.

12:30 - 1:30 p.m. Delegate unto Others or They will Delegate unto You Joe Milevsky, JRM Sales & Management

What are the secrets as to why some companies do not achieve the level of success to which they aspire while other companies are able to excel? `` How do you get everybody in the company on the same page? `` How do you develop and have everyone respect your lines of communication? `` Why is it important to have appropriate job descriptions and what should they look like? `` How do you communicate employee performance and develop their skill sets? `` Why is it critically important to develop conflict resolution strategies? `` How can you improve your teams’ effectiveness in problem resolution? `` How do you ensure that task completion dates are met?

3:30 - 4:30 p.m. Building a Successful CRM for Your Retail Business Stu Greene, STORIS Management Systems

Customer Relationship Marketing (CRM) has played a significant role in reaching the next generation of consumers and providing the best shopping experience. Building relationships by offering incentives while obtaining referrals can go a long way. With so many channels available, such as eCommerce, coupons, sales events, target mailings, etc., it is important to properly manage and execute efficient CRM with the correct technology in place. Join us in a discussion of how to manage customers effectively by tracking sales and lead follow-up activity. We will also explore how the Internet provides the best channel to reach your customer base, while understanding what your customers really want.

Tuesday, july 31, 2012

9:00 - 10:00 a.m. New Trends in Store Design—Capturing the Interest of the Savvy Consumer Martin Roberts, Martin Roberts Design, LLC

Store design has become an important factor in customer satisfaction. Internet savvy customers are a different breed of consumer. With less time for leisurely shopping and easy access to information, customers want to find what they are looking for easily. The opportunity to create one-of-a-kind customized designs can provide a memorable in-store experience that will keep the customer coming back; unique merchandise, moneysaving packages, new concepts like “drive-thru” sales, personal face-to-face attention and virtual imaging are opportunities that online retailers cannot offer. Martin will share stories and “before and after” photos from completed projects as well as some currently in progress.


Market Highlight

10:30 - 11:30 a.m. Are you in the Driver’s Seat? Directing Traffic to Your Retail Site with Search Engine Marketing (SEM) Meghan Wier, MicroD, Inc.

Why is my website not on the first page? What is SEM? What is Google+ Local, and do I really need analytics? These questions and more will be answered in this not-to-be-missed one-hour SEM seminar. This presentation will include general terminology, benefits and the basics of search engine marketing and optimization for the furniture retailer. Focus will be on the core elements of a great website strategy including title tags, description, content, link building, blogging and social media. Attendees will walk away with real-life action items they can use today to get their sites found with first-page placement on Google.

3:30 - 4:30 p.m. Building Business through Social Media Nicole Johnson, GE Capital

Recent consumer research* by GE Capital reveals furniture shoppers spend 89 days on average researching their purchase and visit five unique retailers (three online and two retail stores), totaling seven interactions before they buy. Join us for a conversation with a panel of furniture retailers to learn how they are building business through social media and using online channels to communicate with their customers and drive traffic to their store. We’ll also share the latest feedback from GE Capital’s Virtual Consumer Research Community on why they follow specific retailers today. We look forward to seeing you at the event and as part of the conversation on Twitter @GoGECapital, #GEBuildsBusiness. *2012 GE Capital Retail Finance Annual Major Purchase Shopper Study

12:30 - 1:30 p.m. Don’t Sell, Help them Buy!

wednesday, august 1, 2012

John Egger, Profitability Consulting Group

9:00 - 10:00 a.m.

He who talks the most buys! This seminar will show you how the million dollar writers do it every year. Mr. Egger, CEO of Profitability Consulting, will make this the most profitable hour of your time at market.

2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Special Event Campaigns Ron Cooper, Profit Management Promotions

Many retailers rely on running special events throughout the year to draw the traffic that brings steady sales volume. If you want to get in on the action and start incorporating special events into your advertising campaign, or if you just need fresh ideas, join us for 45 minutes and learn how you can double or triple your sales this year.

Everything Social for Brick-and-Mortar Retailers & the Brands They Carry Bill Napier, Social4Retail

Our local brick-and-mortar stores are facing some tough challenges, as are the brands they support. We must adapt to what consumers want, where they want it, and how they want to engage with content. Having a website is no longer good enough. Retailers must engage the consumer with content—where they want it, when they want it and how they want it. With this presentation we will address all the “relevant social platforms” to help retailers and brands engage consumers “everywhere relevant” in this ever-changing retail environment.

It’s Where You Belong


10:30 - 11:30 a.m. A Perfect Match: Integrating Social Media & Email Marketing to Increase Foot Traffic Crystal Vilkaitis, SnapRetail

We will teach you how to create a cohesive marketing plan using email and social media to drive feet from the street—and into your store! Find out how to catch casual browsers’ eyes and make the connection that could lead to you gaining a lifelong customer.

12:30 - 1:30 p.m. How Can We Turn the World Wide Web Price War into the Full Service, Full Margin Local Store Web? Andy Bernstein, FurnitureDealer.net

It’s no secret that the World Wide Web has become a worldwide price war. Anyone with a website can now hire a shipping company and do business in your market—against you. Local stores have higher overhead. Can you turn your showroom, inventory, sales staff, and community involvement into competitive weapons, or will the extra overhead drive you out of business? We will talk about strategies for local stores to compete and win in the new world we operate in. The seminar will share case studies and examples from FurnitureDealer. net’s relationships with its clients, and will show the new, free DoBizBuzz Furnishing Network.

2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Calculating Actual Delivery Costs Kevin Truett, Speedy Delivery

Do you know what you’re spending on deliveries? Let us help. This seminar is completely interactive. As you complete our cost analysis exercise during the seminar, you’ll go away with real numbers and a good look at what you spend to offer delivery to your customers.

3:30 - 4:30 p.m. Literally Improve Your Bottom Line Overnight Dr. Samantha Kurtz, PeopleLution

Forget standard furniture industry practices about how to attract new customers and grow your home furnishings business. Dr. Samantha Kurtz explains how a revolutionary twist on an old idea will better expose your full business potential and maximize your competitive advantage in the marketplace. This radical departure from conventional thinking supplies all the information you will need to develop a multi-year organizational and marketing strategic plan which will easily result in a 25% boost to your bottom line. And, all that can be accomplished in one night, in one hour, in your store! Escape ordinary thinking and discover the joy of extraordinary outcomes.

thursday, august 2, 2012

9:00 - 10:00 a.m. Perfect Delivery Every Time John McCloskey, Profitability Consulting Group

The sale is not complete until the delivery is done. This seminar will focus on how to achieve 99% plus perfect deliveries. Learn how to delight your customers and lower your costs. With today’s fuel and labor prices, you cannot afford to miss this seminar.

10:30 - 11:30 a.m. Merchandising Your Store in Today’s Ever Changing Business Climate Bob Moorman, JRM Sales & Management

Does your merchandising engage customers through a better understanding of their preferences and behaviors? How should your merchandise lineups be structured? What does the first 500 sq.ft. near the entrance of your store tell the customer? How are you merchandising your floor; what’s new? Your product tagging strategy; is it customer friendly? Your customers; what demographics are you merchandising to? Merchandising must enhance the customer experience and create environments that make customers want to buy.furniture. They are looking for a connection with someone and something. Do you know your story? Does your staff? How are you connecting with the customer before, during and after the sale? You can no longer just sit back and wait for customers to come to you. How are you engaging with this new consumer, and how are you sharing your unique story to capture that loyal business? The main responsibility of a sales manager is to give his/her people the help, training, and guidance that they need in order to achieve success. Don’t miss this exciting seminar and learn how to share stories, share success, and stimulate your business and your staff.


Market Highlight

C-496 Your Association’s home at market

COMPANY

BOOTH NUMBER

ACA - Advertising Concepts of America.....26 BajaUSA Logistics Group............................20 Bank of America Merchant Services...........37 Credit Source Insurance & Finance.......30, 31 CrossCheck.................................................35 Custom Design Software............................13 Diakon Logistics..........................................10 DispatchTrack..............................................25 DSI Delivery.................................................38 Furniture Training Company........................19 Furniture Wizard........................................1, 2 FurnitureCore by Impact Consulting...........36 FurnitureDealer.net................................4, 5, 6 FurnServe....................................................28 GE Capital...................................................16 Genesis Software Systems.........................27 Guardian Protection Products.......................7 JRM Sales & Management..........................40 Mail America................................................24 MicroD.........................................................11 Myriad Software....................................14, 15 NuGuard Surface Protection ......................39 Practical Promotions ..................................22 Profitability Consulting Group.....................29 PROFITsystems, Inc..............................32, 33 RedPrairie..................................................8, 9 SnapRetail...................................................20 Speedy Delivery............................................3 STORIS Management Systems.............17, 18 Truckskin, LLC.............................................23 ViewIT Technologies....................................12 Web4Retail..................................................34   Western Home Furnishings Association WHFA Warehouse Store Launch Pad............... PROFITsystems, Inc.

Your success is more than inventory and the RRC MarketPlace is more of what you need.


Market Highlights

See us at C-496 booth 23

See us at C-496 booths 30,31

See us at C-496 booth 16

See us at C-496 booth 39

GE Capital

WE’RE NOT JUST BANKERS, WE’RE BUILDERS. At GE Capital, we’re not just bankers, we’re builders. With 80 years of experience you can count on us to be there for you and your customers. Of course we bring great financing options, but we also bring you real expertise to help you grow store traffic and sales. Randy Stewart, Relationship Manager at GE Capital delivers proven industry expertise to Grand Home Furnishings. Randy Lundy, Sr. VP, CFO at Grand Home Furnishings knows that it’s the people at GE that make the difference. With GE Capital you can be sure people like Randy Stewart are ready to help you build your business every day. Stop just banking. And start building. gogecapital.com

Randy Lundy Sr. VP, CFO, Grand Home Furnishings

D.

Randy Stewart Relationship Manager, GE Capital

Enhancing Value Every Day For warranty information watch our 2 minute movie at http://www.nuguard.com/movie/nuguard6.html 855-NUGUARD (684-8273) | www.NuGuard.com | info@nuguard.com

Ask about our member discount. 3M, Scotchgard and the Plaid Design are trademarks of 3M.

WHFA 8.375 x 10.875 Sponsorship Ad 0312.indd 1

3/6/12 1:41 PM


Market Highlight

See us at C-496 booth 28

See us at C-496 booth 7

Stability. Experience. Integrity. Service.

For more information on our fully insured furniture protection programs and flexible product options see us at the Las Vegas World Market building C, 4th floor in the Retailer Resource Center, booth 7. www.guardianproducts.net 804-381-9430

West Retailer_Guardian ad.indd 1

See us at C-496 booth 40

See us at C-496 booth 22

6/22/2012 10:02:31 AM


Market Highlights

See us at C-496 booth 34

See us at C-496 in the WHFA booth

COMPLETE INTERNET

MARKETING SOLUTIONS

PLACE YOUR WAREHOUSE OR TOUCH-UP ORDER AT MARKET AND TAKE ADVANTAGE OF MARKET SPECIAL SAVINGS.

E-Commerce • Website Design • Social Media • Email Marketing

Web4Retail is the only web solutions provider endorsed by the NHFA.

$5 off your $50 order

$15 off your $100 order

Come Visit Us at Space #34

$40 off your $200+ order

RRC RETAILER

RESOURCE CENTER Western Home Furnishings Association

C-496

* Orders must be placed in person at the RRC, C-496. ** Orders must be paid in full at market *** Discounts cannot be applied to sales tax or freight

TM

July 30 - August 3, 2012 RetailerNOW Vol. 1 Issue 2

JUNE 2012

PREMIERE ISSUE MAY 2012

Las Vegas M

arket

“THE

July 30 - Au gust 3 WMC Building C-496PROFESSIONAL INSIGHTS FOR TODAY’S HOME FURNISHINGS

INSIGHTS

FOR TODA

Y’S HOME

SHIFT ” June Issue

Make the best and most effective use of your favorite resource, RetailerNOW Magazine, by continuing the conversations online at retailerNOWmag.com Access a full version of the magazine optimized and expanded. More resources, more conversations and more solutions to keep you fully charged and fully informed.

Premier Web si

tes for the Fu

rniture Indu

stry

For more than 20 years, Mic roD has led That’s why mor the way with e than 85% innovative furn of the Top 100 iture mercha furniture bran ndising solu We deliver the ds and retailers tions. expertise, tech rely on MicroD customers to nology, and . your stores. services to tran sform your onli ne presence • Visually Stun and drive ning Product Presentation • Engaging, Interactive Use s Upcoming r Experience • Powerful Roo Market Semi m Planning & Personalizat • Integrated nar Prom ion Are You In • Improved Sea otions, Incentives & Hoo Tools ks rch Results and Directing Traffi The Driver’s Seat? • Latest Mob Ran c to Your Furn king s ile Tagging Tech iture Retail Site with Sea • Comprehens nology rch Eng ine Marketi ive Content ng Managemen • Mobile Frie t Services ndly Website

800.964.38

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JUNE 2012

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FURNISHING

no Blaming the economy no Avoiding the Real ISSUES www. Retai

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National Home Furnishings Association

lerNO Wma

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Western Home Furnishings Association

www.RetailerNOWmag.com

R e t a i l e r N OW m a g . c o m Your magazine—Optimized

g.com


Market Highlight

See us at C-496 booth 14

THINK MOBILE

See us at C-496 booth 38

Delivering Satisfied Customers DSI Delivery’s “Whatever It Takes” approach to customized delivery solutions and distribution services for our home furnishings partners has resulted in long-standing relationships. Kurt Haines - President, Stoneledge Furniture “DSI Delivery’s expertise and professionalism have enabled us to more than double our delivery volume while providing a high level of service to our customers.“ Larry Miller - President/CEO, Sit ‘N Sleep “We’ve been absolutely thrilled with DSI Delivery. We have hundreds of deliveries going out daily. Outsourcing deliveries allows us to focus on what we do best - retailing.” Mike Combest - Vice President/Operations, Sleep Train “Our DSI Delivery account personnel and contract drivers strive to satisfy our customers and our consumer surveys show that they succeed.” • Over 6,000,000 deliveries since 1997 • Clearly Defined Core Values & Mission Statement • Specializing in Last-Mile White-Glove delivery Visit us at the Retailer Resource Center, Building C-496 and learn how our “Whatever It Takes” philosophy can add value to your home furnishings business.

1-800-335-6557 • www.dsicompanies.net 1-800-676-4243 • sales@myriadsoftware.com • www.myriadsoftware.com

See us at C-496 booth 35 He just found the perfect sofa... and a great way to pay for it! Multiple Check from CrossCheck Check Services Increase Sales and Offer Customers Payment Flexibility - Standard Check Guarantee - Remote Deposit Capture - Multiple Check/Future Deposit We are pleased to work with these associations. Ask us about member discounts.

CrossCheck, Inc. sales@cross-check.com (888) 937-2249 www.cross-check.com

See us at C-496 booth 1


Market Highlights

EXCLUSIVE DEALS FOR ASSOCIATION MEMBERS NEW PROGRAM

Custom Music & Messaging 75 percent of your customers are influenced by the music playing in your store. Make sure the music you play matches your brand and is 100 percent licensed. Our new program with Retail Radio will help you create the right mood in your store by developing a customized music station just for your store!

Integrated Marketing Reach your key customers and inspire them to purchase. Our program with Banner Marketing allows you to reach your customer through: hh Promotional Websites hh Circulars & Inserts hh Direct Mail Promotions hh TV & Web Video hh Email & Mobile Marketing hh POP (In-store Signage) hh Public Relations & Content

TruckSkin Create exciting opportunities for promotions and profit with TruckSkin’s changeable advertising panels. hh Easily updated by you and your staff. hh Easy ordering.

Sign4Retail

hh Design and approve online.

Attract drive by traffic into your store with attractive street banners. Choose from a variety of styles or create a custom message. This new program offers discounted prices to members on new WindBlade Pole Banners, A-Frame signs, giant banners, sales tags and more.

hh Change designs when you change promotions.

CALL YOUR MEMBERSHIP REPRESENTATIVE TODAY AND GET STARTED!

NHFA

National Home Furnishings Association

WHFA

Western Home Furnishings Association

Retailers East of the Rocky Mountains, call (800) 888-9590 SEHFA SHFAwww.nhfa.org

South Eastern Home Furnishings Association

Southern Home Furnishings Association

Retailers in the 12 Western states, call (800) 422-3778 www.whfa.org

NHFA

National Home Furnishings Association

WHFA

Western Home Furnishings Association

SEHFA

South Eastern Home Furnishings Association

S


Market Highlight

Hot Waffles Monday – Thursday 7:30 – 9:00 a.m. Serving delicious waffles with all the toppings

Don’t forget to bring in your Hot Ticket to C-496 for your FREE Breakfast Pass

Sponsored by Surya Rugs

Stay & Play

Monday – Wednesday Starts at 4:00 p.m. Hate crowds on the bus & in the garage? Enjoy beer on tap and a few games of Shuffleboard Sponsored by Diakon Logistics

Hot Coffee • Mochas • Lattes • Americano. . . All day, Every Day


Market Highlights

Merchandising Arason Enterprises

See the patented, newly introduced low profile “CredenZzZ” cabinet bed, shown at left, only 39 inches high. Our best selling, promotionally priced, studio style in the popular cappuccino finish with faux nickel hardware will also be on display. Both cabinets open to full-length beds, have roomy storage drawers and a raised sleeping platform. No need to move the cabinet or remove items from the top to sleep. Arason Enterprises, Inc. P.O. Box 3274, Annapolis, MD 21403 Phone (410) 703-4412 • Fax (410) 280-3388 Website: www.fu-chest.com Las Vegas Showroom: Building C-1350 with Speciality Sleep Association. Showroom phone: (410) 703-4412

Cresent Fine Furniture

Waverly is a contemporary lifestyle design crafted in solid Acacia with a wire brushed finish. Waverly features minimalist bronze bar pulls that provide a striking contrast to the rich Lava finish. The low profile Platform Bed features two solid Acacia floating panels framed by 4” canted Acacia posts for a relaxed profile. The bed is also available with a storage rail that can be used individually or in pairs. The cases feature clean lines with floating tops, beveled posts and a looped end frame with open space at the bottom—subtle detailing that lighten the overall look. Full extension, ball bearing, side mounted drawer guides support the English dovetailed solid wood drawers, which close over blind parting rails to keep the look clean and contemporary. Other modern conveniences such as cedar lined drawers and a powered nightstand round out the features. Cresent Fine Furniture Phone: (615) 452-1671 • Fax (615) 452-0098 Website: www.cresent.com Las Vegas Showrooms Building C-1124 & 1138 Las Vegas Showroom Phone: (615) 975-4862

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Market Highlight

Simply Amish

Twin-Star International

Let your imagination take wing with this graceful and delicate collection from Simply Amish. The Monarch collection gets its inspiration from the butterfly, which has captured the interest of young and old for generations. This collection has gentle curves that will inspire flights of fancy all your own. It is also completely handcrafted in the U.S. along with all of our other products. Come to our showroom in Las Vegas and check out this and other product lines, or see us online. Simply Amish PO Box 67, Arcalo, IL 6910 Phone: (217) 962-0277 Website: www.simplyamish.com Las Vegas Showroom: Building C-1184

The Millennium entertainment center introduces a new way to enjoy your favorite music and videos with its built-in iPod or iPhone docking capabilities. The integrated sound bar that features four speakers, two tweeters and rear facing bass ports assures the Millennium will provide a vivid audio experience. Bluetooth technology allows wireless audio streaming from any Bluetooth capable mobile device. Side display shelves and a deep center drawer provide plenty of space that is perfect for storing all of your entertainment needs. Twin-Star International 1690 S. Congress Ave, Suite 210 Delray Beach, FL 33345 Ph (888) 776-2490 Website: www.twinstarhome.com Las Vegas showroom: Building A-548

Omnia

Omnia Phone: (909) 393-4400 • Fax (909) 393-4401 Founding Member: SFC – Sustainable Furnishings Council Website: www.omnialeather.com Website: www.americanelegancefurniture.com Las Vegas Showrooms Building A-256 & A-242

With the Remington offering a timeless look, this transitional style showcases a deep diamond tufting with accentuated pewter color nail heads, individually placed by true leather artisans.The Remington is available as a 3 or 4 seat cushion sofa, loveseat, chair and ottoman, allowing the flexibility of placement within any environment. With bench-made manufacturing, this American-made product will become an heirloom to its new owner. Enjoy the attention to detail in the Remington by Omnia, the ultimate to personalizing comfort.

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Mike Egan President

Hector Mustafa Ron Cooper Bruce Ketcham Barry Gevertz VP of Operations

Director of Sales & Marketing

Southeast Regional Manager

Western Regional Manager


Willis Award

Gary Woodham, Colfax Furniture—2011 Willis Award of Merit Winner “Retail is my hobby. I would love to have time to play golf, but being in retail all of these years hasn’t given me enough time to develop a golf game that would allow people to want to play with me,” laughs Gary Woodham. “I don’t have any regrets about that either.” Colfax Furniture @ a Glance 3 Stores, 1 Distribution Center Wintson-Salem, Greensboro, Kernsville, NC 80 employees 300,000 sq. ft. of showroom & warehouse space www.colfaxfurniture.com www.facebook.com/colfaxfurniture SHFA Member

By Melissa Dressler

Calm, joyful, passionate, and humble are all words that could be used to describe this year’s Willis Award of Merit winner. While his golf game might be lacking, his passion for the home furnishings industry is strong— retail runs through Gary’s veins.

Gary Woodham and Sandy Bryant with the Willis Award of Merit

The Best. For Less. Everyday.

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ary’s journey in the furniture industry started over 40 years ago when he worked for Rhodes Furniture and let him experience both sides of the industry, manufacturing and retailing. “What I have learned from working both sides of the industry is that, unfortunately, there is sometimes an attitude of ‘us against them’ or ‘manufacturers vs. retailers’,” he said. “We are all in this together, and we need to work together to achieve a positive outcome. Treat the vendors they way they need to be treated, and they will be fair to us as retailers. We all have to work together to make the industry stronger, especially as we encounter challenges with the national economy and the transitions going on within our industry.” After years of working in the industry, Gary was introduced to Jackie Landriff, the owner of Colfax Furniture, through a mutual acquaintance. Colfax Furniture was adding new store locations, and looking for employees. Gary was the right man for the job. Opening its doors in the 1960s in Colfax, NC, Colfax Furniture was one of the first retailers to buy showroom samples, and sell them. “Years ago when Jackie started the company, many vendors would just take the samples back to their factories after showing them,” Gary said. “They never tried to sell them, so we would purchase the samples, buy closeouts, and then blend the products in with our regular goods. That’s how Colfax Furniture found its niche.” Today, Jackie has retired, but her sister Gale is active in the business and keeps the original intent of Colfax Furniture alive: The Best. For Less. Everyday. Gary is the VP of Merchandising, buying product for the three store locations, in WinstonSalem, Greensboro and Kernsville,

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Willis Award

Gary believes, “You have to work with the community to be able to provide for that community.”

The Woodham Family Dr. Richard Bennington, Gary Woodham, Scott Woodham

Bernards Inc. Congratulates

GARY WOODHAM of Colfax Furniture

SHFA Willis Award winner for 2011

“Integrity is our mark of distinction” 800.861.6130 Greensboro, NC bernardsinc.com For more information contact us at: sales@bernardsinc.com 52

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NC. He finds his job to not only be rewarding, but fun. “The merchandising and buying have always been the fun side of the job,” he said. “It is very rewarding when you put together a merchandise line-up that works well and helps create sales for the company.” Gary believes, “You have to work with the community to be able to provide for that community.” Gary and the Colfax Furniture team are highly involved in feeding the homeless and working with the Red Cross. They also work with their local church to support various projects and outreach. Gary gives back to the furniture industry by being an active member on the Southern Home Furnishings Association’s (SHFA) board for over 15 years and is now a member of the NHFA Executive Committee. He also served as a Past President for the SHFA. Family is also an essential part of Gary’s life. While a passion for the furniture industry runs through his veins, his family is his heart. When his sons were younger, Gary coached them in Little League and basketball. Since his sons have grown, Gary spends his free time with his wife Judy, taking short trips or spending time with friends. “Over the years, I have developed a lot of friendships with people in the industry,” he added. “Being in Greensboro, we have a lot of vendors here; we enjoy the relationship and time that we get to spend with them.” Surprised and honored about being named the 2011 Willis Award of Merit recipient, Gary said, “It is a great honor. I am surprised, and a little overwhelmed, about being this year’s recipient. It is something I never thought would happen. I have been in the furniture business for over 40 years, and have attended the Southern Home Furnishings Conventions and award banquets, and just never had any idea that one day I would be fortunate enough to be a recipient.”


Feature

I’ve Joined the Social Wave— Now What?! Answers to the social media questions keeping you up at night…

You’ve jumped into the social media pipeline, created a Facebook page, sent out a Tweet and pinned every delicious cupcake recipe you have found. Now what? We’ve got the answers to three social media questions keeping you up at night (cause that’s all you think about, right?!). Q: How the heck do I measure the ROI?! So you’ve been taking the time to announce new product, share exclusive social media only sales, tweet your favorite products and new arrivals, update your blog frequently, and a million other things—all while running your business. Phew… that’s a lot. Now it’s time to think of two things. First, commend yourself on the many hats you wear. Second, how are you going to measure the results of your online efforts? Social media return on investment, or ROI, has been the elephant in the room for quite some time. Most small businesses want to stay away from social media with the fear that their involvement isn’t providing a monetary return. The truth is that the success of social media marketing isn’t just dollars earned but relationships built, brand awareness, customer retention and much more. Now is the time to face the elephant.

What is the ROI of Social Media?

Reward your Social Community What am I measuring anyway? The first step in measuring social ROI is to determine a set of goals and objectives. Determine your success indicators such as likes, retweets, comments, shares, follows, web traffic and sales. Record meaningful stats each month and benchmark them. Analyze spikes in engagement in “Reach” and “People Talking About Us” using Facebook Insights in order to determine what’s most effective. Rewarding your online community with exclusive coupons, sales, and daily offers is an easier way to record revenue and foot traffic, especially if the customer needs to bring in the coupon or give a special code in-store. Measure the number of coupons redeemed, noting the amount of the offer. Determine if the revenue from daily offers surpasses the cost of running one and whether it acquired new customers. 

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Q: What’s the future hold for Facebook? Could it possibly become the next MySpace?

You can track how well linked posts are doing with a free URL shortening service such as bit.ly. These work great with Twitter where you can’t measure interactions as easily. You can use your bit.ly account to track how many people clicked through to a tweeted link. Pay attention to the Tweets/links that are getting clicked on the most, that’s the type of content your audience wants to see. If you have a website, especially if you sell online, then you must be using Google Analytics to track traffic. Google provides you with informational tutorials and resources to get started very quickly. Even if you have analytics on your site, you might want to watch some of the tutorials to learn about features you might not be utilizing to help you understand your web traffic and where it is coming from. This tool will help you see who is accessing your website from Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, your blog or other sites that might be promoting your product. Test, tweak, and try again As an independent retailer, you must measure all marketing efforts in order to determine ROI and continue with effective strategies. Yes, this does take time, especially in the beginning as you figure out which marketing channels produce the best results. But it’s important to take the time so you set up a well-oiled marketing machine. Always test and tweak your social media strategy to better determine what interests your audience. ROI may be the elephant in the room, but your marketing doesn’t need to be a circus! —Christian Kratsas, SnapRetail, http://snapretail.com

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With Facebook’s recent announcement to become a publically traded company and the rise and fall of their stock, many are asking the question, “Will Facebook become the next MySpace?” I hear this question from retailers and manufacturers every day, “Should I really invest the time, energy and money into something that might die in 1, 2, 5 or 10 years?” My response is short and simple. Can you really afford not to invest in Facebook? Gazing into the future of any type of social media is frightening. This is because social media is always evolving; it’s morphing and transitioning into something new every day. Look at the sudden emergence of Pinterest! BOOM! The new fad came out of nowhere and now many retailers are figuring out ways to make money from it. Keep this key mentality in mind. Social media is going to change with the times, just as we’ve witnessed with traditional media: `` Radio turned into satellite and Internet radio `` TV turned into YouTube, Hulu, Google TV and Apple TV `` The newspaper turned into online news, Twitter, and mobile or table applications

You can rest assured Facebook is here to stay. It won’t be the same in 10 years time or even one year from now. But, it’s vital to keep the focus on the here-andnow of what Facebook can do for your retail store. Look at the stats below and ask what Facebook can do for your store: `` 900 Million Active Users

`` 67% B2C (business to consumer) have acquired a customer via Facebook.

`` The average Facebook Fan:

• Spends $71.84 more than a non-fan • 28% more likely to continue using a brand • 41% more likely to recommend a product —Kevin Doran, R&A Marketing, www.ramarketing.com


Feature

Q: What will be the big trend in social media in the next six months? We went to the community on this one, polling different people in the industry. Here’s what they predict:

I’d say business blogs with business relevant content and integrated video: “Everything you need to know about Leather”. —Bill Napier, Napier Marketing

Social TV—Increased interactivity with TV programming such as selecting content, voting and commenting on shows and commercials. —Doug Knorr, Knorr Marketing

The trend in social media in the next six months will involve maximizing the amount of content that businesses make available and users are absorbing, and transforming that content into visual aids. —Samantha Shaffer, R&A Marketing

Pinterest. It will continue to grow and inspire. —Sev Ritchie, Web4Retail

Facebook Pages. Facebook is adding a lot of functionality for businesses on their pages. I can get updates on posts, comments and insights pushed straight to my iPhone so I know exactly what’s being said and done on our Facebook Page. This takes the worry out of maintaining the page—I don’t have to be scared that someone will post something terrible about our store and not know about it for a week. This has helped our page validity and improved our Facebook growth. After all, social media is about being current, relevant and engaged. —Nick Gates, Gates Furniture

I think social shopping will be a big trend in the next six months. Consumers want to visually see, share and play with their products before making a purchase. —Melissa Dressler, RetailerNOW

Contests on Facebook as a way to build the stores brand. —Mike Jensen, MC Jensen & Associates

Congratulations!

Gary Woodham Colfax Furniture SHFA 2011 Willis Award winner

From your friends at

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Feature

Stand Out with Social Media

Make Social Media Part of your Strategy

M

GETTING STARTED: Listen to what is being said about your business, your competitors and your industry. Pick one channel to start with and get familiar with the social network of your choice. Identify objectives and what qualifies as success (i.e., offer redemptions, shorter sales cycles, increased word of mouth, etc.) Prepare scenario plans to manage negative and amplify positive. Integrate your social media channel throughout your marketing experience by including it on communications and collateral materials.

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ore than half Here are five things to remember as you develop of Americans, your social media presence: over the age Commitment required: Timely and active participation of 12, have a is vital to social media success; dedicate a resource and/or profile on a specific times each day to monitor and manage the channel. social media site, and social Content is key: Regardless of the network you choose, networking now accounts social sites must be updated regularly to keep friends for 22 percent of all online and followers coming back. Make sure you have relevant activity. Opportunities information and something fresh to offer such as coupons, abound online and you special offers, new products or ideas. could be missing out on a broad and diverse market Relevancy is essential: It’s not about just pushing that wants to engage with your marketing message. People who engage with a business your business if you’re not via a social community want information that is relevant looking at ways to build and timely. It can be product-oriented or something about your business through the community, but it must have meaning for their life, social media. otherwise you’re wasting their time. With more than 46 million Learn from others: There is a wealth of knowledge and social media users checking tools for using social media for business—many at no cost. their accounts at least Find articles, webinars and other resources and see how once a day, you may not social media is used to build businesses and implement those be maximizing your sales ideas for yours. opportunities if you’re Don’t shy away from the negative: People sometimes not connecting with your air grievances on social media sites. As tempting as it customers through channels may be to delete or remove negative feedback, use these such as Facebook, Twitter, as opportunities to turn detractors into advocates. A Instagram or Pinterest. kind, respectful response shows that you are serious about If social media seems customer service and satisfaction, and goes a long way confusing as a marketing toward building and maintaining a positive reputation platform, here are some online. tips to get your feet wet in Perhaps the most valuable aspect of using social media creating posts, chats and blogs to generate buzz about is the opportunity it provides to create and nurture your business and integrate it relationships with your customers—giving them a reason to remember you the next time they need to make a purchase. into your overall efforts. With furniture shoppers spending an average of 89 days “Social media is an researching their purchase and visiting at least five unique important way to amplify retailers, three online and two bricks-and-mortar stores*, it’s your message and extend important to build a solid online presence. your marketing efforts,” “Remember the ‘social’ in social media,” said Williams. “It’s said Cristy Williams of GE about using these channels and communities to enable Capital, one of the nation’s conversations to develop and evolve around how your largest consumer lenders. business brings value to your customers.” “It’s important for businesses to establish a presence Attend a special Social Media Panel discussion, sponsored by GE Capital, during online and on social media the Las Vegas Market and hear first-hand from retailers that are successfully using social media. Tuesday, July 31, 3:30-4:30 p.m., C-496. #GEBuildsBusiness. sites, and begin building relationships, since this is a *2012 GE Capital Retail Finance Annual Major Purchase Shopper Study channel that will only grow.” www.retailerNOWmag.com


1c

AMERICA’S MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED BED IS ALSO

COOLER THAN THE COMPETITION. TESTING PROVES TEMPUR-PEDIC® BEDS SLEEP COOLER THAN iCOMFORT® BEDS Tempur-Pedic® beds were put to the test and the results speak for themselves. While Tempur-Pedic® beds may be a hot seller in your showroom, research proves they sleep cooler throughout the night than the competition.

WARMER

˚F

98.0˚

TEMPUR-Contour™

TEMPUR-Cloud®

95.5˚

iComfort Genius

COOLER

96.0˚

iComfort Prodigy

96.5˚

iComfort Insight

97.0˚

iComfort Revolution

Surface Temp

97.5˚

95.0˚

Gel Memory Foam

TEMPUR® Material

In independent tests designed to measure heat generated and retained during a seven-hour period, Ergonomie Institut München, a TÜV approved lab, proved the TEMPUR-Cloud® and TEMPUR-Contour™ beds sleep cooler than the competition. TÜV Rheinland is the leading global authority on heat-related product testing and certifications worldwide. Learn more about the test methodology and TÜV Rheinland at tempurpedic.com/sleepscool. Source: 2012 EIM Heat Study

Sell the best. Higher tickets. Lowest returns. Highest satisfaction. © 2012 Tempur-Pedic Management, Inc. All Rights Reserved.


Feature

10th Anniversary Furniture Sale We have an app for that!

Marketing the next generation of marketing By Kim Miller-Hershon

The world of mobile marketing is happening, NOW. You need to wake up and do whatever you need to do to take advantage of this extraordinary marketing opportunity. Are you going to be a part of it, or are you going to let it pass you by because it intimidates you? Do you want to attract new, young customers that will buy from you for years to come? Are you ready to move your company into the new age of marketing to attract those customers? Don’t let the technology scare you. Mobile apps are an affordable, accessible and powerful means to reach your customers and perspective customers. Let’s talk about why mobile apps are good for business and how to effectively use apps as a marketing tool. The statistics for mobile phone use and downloads of apps are staggering. Ninety percent of all U.S. citizens have their mobile device within reach 24/7. (Source: Morgan Stanley) And, 70 percent of all mobile searches result in action within 1 hour. (Source: Mobile Marketer) Also, it takes 90 minutes for the average person to respond to an email. Astoundingly, it takes 90 seconds for the average person to respond to a text message. (Source: CTIA.org) In regards to app downloads, the Gartner Group reports that, “Worldwide mobile application store downloads are forecast to reach 17.7 billion downloads in 2011, a 117 percent increase from an estimated 8.2 billion downloads in 2010.” By the end of 2014, Gartner forecasts over 185 billion applications will have been downloaded from mobile app stores, since the first launch in July 2008. Wouldn’t you like a piece of that? Your innovative marketing tool fights against the “stodgy, old fashioned” image. Apps also increase your brand visibility, customer loyalty, promotional ability and overall interaction with your customer. The great thing about mobile apps is that if you have a website, creating and

managing an app is affordable and easy. Utilizing counter top displays and/or window posters that display your “App icon” will help you harness the power of this compelling medium. Now that you’re on board and you are ready to build your customized app, what the heck do you do with it?! `` Give customers turn-by-turn GPS directions from anywhere in the world—directly to your store.

`` Create a viral buzz with built in sharing capabilities to Facebook, Twitter, and email. `` Build brand loyalty by giving your customers coupons for checking in at your business. Coupons can be “unlocked” based on your criteria. `` Provide up to date information about events and specials by creating an events calendar that is easily updated.

`` Keep your customers informed about everything involving your business, including pictures of merchandise. `` Sell directly from your mobile app.

`` Give customers multiple ways to get in touch with you with contact pages, direct calling and email.

Once you’ve created your app, you need to know how to use it to get more qualified customers in the door. A powerful way to facilitate that is to send push notifications (text message boxes that pop up on your phone). You can interact with your clients and prospective clients directly and instantly. You no longer have to wait for them to open their computer. Use push notifications to send weekly specials right to their phones and even send notice of special events or new pieces of merchandise as soon as they come in. Think about this: your store is empty on


a Monday afternoon and you are paying employees to stand around. You push out to your customers: Anyone who comes in and buys something in the next 4 hours gets a discount or even better, a bonus! Remember, this notice shows up on their phones. They don’t need to open an email or Facebook. Cha-

ching—that’s the sound of money hitting your drawer! You can also integrate mobile apps to download advertising with marketing that is already in place. Promote your app on your TV commercial and/or print ads. Publicize it on your website, as well as the store. Create a Facebook

contest that ties in downloading your app. The ideas are endless and if you can’t figure it out on your own, hire a marketing expert to help you. You can also find creative ways to pay for the cost of creating the app and marketing it. Offer your app for free, then run ads from Admob or Millenium Media and get paid when your customers click on other companies’ ads. Conversely, create (and pay) for an ad that will play on other sites, to increase traffic and help you get new customers that you previously couldn’t reach. Reaching qualified customers is your goal. So, here’s another invaluable tip—optimize the name of your app for search. Sometimes people browse the app store and sometimes they search a specific topic. Since your store name may not be recognized, you may want to name your app something else. Recently, the most downloaded app in the Android marketplace was “Draw Something Free”. Bottom line, make your app easy to find. Apps are searchable in the Apple app store, the Android marketplace (recently renamed, Google Play Store) and on search engines. Google indexes the entire app description, which is good for you. Integrate search terms and keywords into your information, and watch those downloads happen! Mobile apps provide a unique way to market instantly that is not available in any other medium. It is the marketing tool of the future, and for the future. So get off the couch, and start building your app today! Kim Miller-Hershon is a Business Development expert, who also builds mobile apps. Contact her at kim@designinsideinc.com.

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Is your salesperson ready for the game? By Brad Huisken

Test their selling know-how!

S

o you think you are a great salesperson? To me a great salesperson is one that is constantly shattering sales goals and records. He or she is the one person that other salespeople look up to with amazement because they make every day, week and month great. These great salespeople are few and far between. Unfortunately, most salespeople have never had any formal sales training. Usually they are thrown to the wolves simply because they interviewed extremely well and are given the position. To be as great salesperson it takes a lot of hard work, perseverance, training, discipline and yes, experience. It amazes me when I talk to salespeople and I ask if they have 10 years of experience or one year, 10 times. Far too often the answer is one year, 10 times. Great salespeople are always looking for a little extra knowledge, information and refining their sales skills. Sales and sales management are the only professions that I can think of that requires very little training and hardly ever has any testing involved. In order to be a doctor, lawyer, auto mechanic, electrician, plumber, etc., it takes an enormous amount of training and testing. In many sales organizations the salesperson is hired, shown where everything is, given a sales number and a goal, then it is off to the races. Some make it based on their enthusiasm and self-determinism. Far too many good people don’t make it, give up and go away. The day of the furniture sales clerk are dead and gone—today it is the time for the furniture sales professional to step up and make things happen. Only through constantly looking to improve one’s skills, ability, and knowledge will a clerk become a true sales professional. There are five criteria for training that a salesprofessional must institute into their training regiment.

They are:

 You have to hear it  You have to read it  You have to write it  You have to role-play it and  You have do it in live presentations.

Only if the five criteria have been met, will the information be retained for the long term and thus consistently applied Additionally, there are four areas where furniture sales professionals need to be trained. They are: 1. Sales Techniques 2. Product Knowledge 3. Operational Knowledge and 4. Customer Service. For the purpose of this article I am only addressing Sales Techniques and Customer Service Skills. I would challenge you to take the test on the next page, and then check your answers at www.retailerNOWmag.com. If you get less than 80 percent, I think you need more knowledge and training. If you are over 80 percent—well done, you are probably a top producer that doesn’t need to depend on your company’s advertising, special sales and promotions, or the store’s traffic, etc. in order to excel. Take the test  Author, trainer, consultant, and speaker Brad Huisken is President of IAS Training. He publishes a free weekly newsletter called “Sales Insight” For a free subscription or more information contact IAS Training at (800) 248-7703, info@iastraining.com, www.iastraining.com or fax (303) 936-9581

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Sales Skills Evaluation 1. Give your definition of the job of a salesperson: ____________________________________ . 2. What are you trying to accomplish every time you make a presentation to a customer? Explain. 3. The easiest way to sell additional items is to _____________________. 4. There are five ways a salesperson can increase traffic in a store or their personal number of selling opportunities. They are: 5. When a customer enters the store, which phrase is the most appropriate?

) Hi, Can I help you? a b) Hello, Is there anything I can help you find? c) Hello, Our sale merchandise is over there… d) Hi, Welcome to our store. e) Any of the above. 6. What are the primary reasons people buy products? 7. When should you ask the question, “How much do you want to spend?”

) Before you show the merchandise. a b) When you are showing the merchandise. c) When the customer brings up price. d) When trying to handle the price objection. 8. What should a salesperson say when a customer says “I’m just looking?”

9. Which customers should a salesperson ask to buy something?

) The customer that seems interested in buying. a b) The customer that looked at merchandise and is coming back. c) The customer that can’t decide. d) Every customer that a salesperson waits on. 10. How many questions should a salesperson ask in a normal sales presentation?

a) 1-3 b) 4-7 c) 7-12 d) over 12 e) as many as it takes 11. Give an example of three questions you would ask a customer. 12. People won’t buy from us unless __________ and _________ have been established in our products and our company. 13. Having a complete understanding of _____________ gives a salesperson confidence. 14. When should a sale be turned over?

a) You can’t answer a product knowledge question. b) You are not getting along with the customer. c) The customer doesn’t like you. d) You can’t get the customer to buy from you. e) The customer isn’t reacting to what you are saying. f) a, b, & c only. g) all of the above.

Print this out and give it to your salespeople. Visit www.retailerNOWmag.com to see the answers.

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Being portable for sales, inventory or business analytics is key for any Home Furnishings retailer. Using a PC, tablet or smart phone to work inside or outside of your store is critical in this day and age of technology.

THINK MOBILE

Your designer meets in the customer’s home to create the shopping cart and check inventory availability for delivery. The warehouse staff needs to quickly receive an item to load it on the delivery truck. The owner or manager is traveling and wants to get a quick glance of their daily or monthly business analytics. All of this can be done with a tablet or smartphone. Myriad Software understands how important it is to be mobile. Whether it’s to close a sale or review the important aspects of your business, a tablet or smartphone will provide access to your business management system in or outside of your daily operation. So if you’re looking for a business system that allows you to work when you’re in your operation and on the go, think Eclicktic™ and Eclicktic™ BE Mobile. Contact a Myriad Software sales representative @ sales@myriadsoftware.com

Please stop by and see us at the Las Vegas Market WFHA Resource Center Building C: 4th Floor July 30th–August 3rd

1-800-676-4243 • sales@myriadsoftware.com www.myriadsoftware.com

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You never get a second chance to make a first impression ✔ White glove home delivery ✔ Dedicated well-equipped modern fleet ✔ Custom truck branding ✔ Warehousing ✔ State-of-the-art technology and reporting ✔ Consumer surveys ✔ On-site management and staff

The Difference is in the Details

703.530.0677 www.diakonlogistics.com Visit Us In High Point & Las Vegas High Point Market Retailer Resource Center, Plaza Suites Las Vegas Market Retailer Resource Center, Building C


What’s Selling

What’s Selling

Every month, What’s Selling Now features best sellers from across the country—in different styles, categories and price points. Here’s what’s selling now…

Submitted By: Donny Hinton

Submitted by: Carol Bell

Store Name: Colortyme

Store Name: Contents Interiors

Location: Gaffney, SC

Location: Tucson, AZ

Manufacturer: United Furniture Industry

Manufacturer American Leather

Product Name: #6569 Seabring Coffeebean (also black, taupe)

Product Name Comfort Sleeper

Is the product: Made In America: Yes, North Carolina Warehouse ready: Yes Container Product: No

Is the product: Made In America: Yes Warehouse ready: Special order, 4-5 weeks Container Product: No

Cost: $198

Cost: $1,240 for the queen single in microfiber

Retail Price: $399

Retail Price: $2,799 for the queen single in microfiber

Product level: Promotional

Product level: Luxury

Why do you think it is a successful seller: Great combination of styling and comfort How available is the product from the manufacturer: Quick ship or truckload

Why do you think it is a successful seller:   Unique patented product   Manufacturer helps build the brand with national advertising.   Personal referral stories from client to client

Additional information about the product: United Furniture Ind. has a great product line for the $399 to $699 stationary sofa price point. Also, have great selection of motion, sleepers and recliners. Marketed under the Simmons and Simmons Beautyrest name.

Additional information about the product: Best sleeper on the market!

Made in America

Warehouse Ready

How available is the product from the manufacturer: Choices of fabrics, ultra suede, microfiber or leather available in 4-5 weeks

Container Product

Look for these symbols to let you know more about the products:

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Taking Over—

T

 he day has come that as a business owner you start to think about retirement. Will you be able to keep the business in the family? What if your child is not ready to take over the family business? Eventually, when you are ready to make that lifestyle change, you will want to secure all the hard work, finances, and time you put towards creating a successful company, and you will question if your child is prepared to run your enterprise. According to research from the Family Business Institute, approximately 30 percent of family-owned businesses are passed on to the second generation. Of that 30 percent, 12 percent eventually transfer leadership to the third generation, and only 3 percent span to the fourth generation. If your goal is to keep your business thriving for generations to come, there are key concepts to consider, supported with a mapped out strategic plan. Here are some steps to take to ensure a smooth transition.

Prepping for the Takeover  Establish a Succession Plan: To help your business survive with the next generation, you need a plan of action with carefully set guidelines. Develop a business succession plan well before your intended retirement time frame. The earlier you start the progression, the easier it will be to hand off the business without causing rifts between family members and uncertainty within the current operations. It is important to also consider your customers, vendors, and employees that are involved in the process. Factor in how you will keep them happy while moving forward during the transition period.

Tips to Building a Succession Plan Consider your Health: Be aware of your health and sudden circumstances 66

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that can hinder your role as head of the business. You want to be prepared for the unanticipated such as disability or death. That’s why it’s important to have a plan in place well in advance. Develop a Timeline: Start handing over the business gradually to your child or successor. Mapping out a time period for each progression will make it easy for your successor to follow the path. Set Goals: Devise a contract that outlines your goals for the future of the company. This will ensure that your business will continue to run the way you had envisioned. Name a Successor: Choose the best person to take over the family business. The sooner you announce the new successor to your employees and peers, the transition will naturally evolve with your employees and vendors. Develop an Estate Plan: Divide shares among the future inheritors of your business with an attorney and accountant. Square away all the financial logistics so you don’t leave behind any debt or tie up your business assets in liquidation.  Mentor, Educate, and Train: Have an open conversation of what it’s like to run the business with your child/children. Instill the value of the business’ hierarchy, the inside and out daily routines, and the passion that you have for the company. Provide education on each role and position within the company, and give them the opportunity to climb the ladder from within. Include them in your business meetings and events to network and develop relationships with your industry peers and partners. Additionally, there are management training courses and other leadership seminars and workshops to attend, that can help facilitate the transition from one leader to another. These options www.retailerNOWmag.com

for increased leadership development are tools for the future that the business can rely on for success.

How to Implement the Education Process Start Early: Teach your children about the business from an early stage. Make sure they have a strong understanding of how each department works and the responsibilities of the individuals in each area.

Be a Coach: Train them about how the business finances and operations work. Walk them through a day in the life of the accounting department. Show them how to maintain budgets, what it costs to keep the store running, stock and inventory, and supplies. Give your child the opportunity to manage the financials as they become acquainted with the bookkeeping process. Observe: Take notice of your child’s weaknesses in the business and work to fix them. Eliminate errors and omit the possibility of making future mistakes.


By Michelle Beres Skyta

Review Performance: Conduct regular employee reviews with your future successor. This will open a one-on-one discussion of what needs work, what they are doing well, and what you’d like to see more of from him/her. Build communication skills: Your successor of the next generation will need to be familiar with how to communicate with staff, vendors, and customers. Provide them with a central understanding of how to maintain

revised company mission statement as a standard base that the new succession team can implement and grow within your company.  Consult an Expert for Financial Decisions: Meet with a succession expert to manage your finances, ownership shares, estate taxes, and any other specific terms and details. Establish the value of your business by conducting annual appraisals. Having a third party consultant to assist with the process will be an asset in the planning process. This individual may also act as a mediator.  Hand off the Control: When the time comes for you to move from your post as head of the business, it’s important to give your child the space needed to succeed in the family business. Let them have proper correspondence within the freedom to take the reins and feel the business. confident that they will carry on with  Clearly Communicate Expectations: the same business values that you had worked so hard to establish. Give your It’s important to discuss the goals you child the encouragement to be your have for the company’s future with your successor and embrace their opinions family. Being on the same page will and ideas. As times change throughout prevent disagreements while moving the generations, so does the nature forward with the transition period. of the business. The next generation Create an outline of responsibilities of business owners holds the keys to required within the business. staying up-to-date in a competitive Define and solicit agreement for an retail environment. Give your child organizational structure that address the assurance that you have trust that the new management team hierarchy, he/she will excel in taking your family post transition. Allow for a new or business to the next level.

What if My Child IS NOT Ready to Lead How do you keep your family business going when your child is not ready? Maybe your children are not old enough yet, or they are currently following career paths of their own. First, look at the bigger picture, and ask yourself the key questions: Is my child/children truly interested in taking on the family business? If so, is he/she prepared to take on the responsibility of continuing the legacy? What specific role is he/she interested in pursuing? Once you’ve answered these questions and your child has agreed to take over, it’s time to start nurturing the preparation for transition. Ensure your vision for the company lives on with them, and that they are on the same page for the future of the business.

Looking Outside the Family What if your children are not interested in pursuing the family business? Maybe they do not feel the same passion as you do, or have taken a different career path. Ask yourself if you still want to continue the business in this situation. If it’s important for you to keep your company going, consider signing over the ownership to a trusted and venerable employee or business partner. In doing this, you may be able to stay on as a silent partner while the succession proceeds. Michelle Beres Skyta has over 12 years of experience with Advertising, Marketing, and PR. She has been with STORIS, a leading retail software solutions and services provider for Big Ticket retailers, for the past six years. Currently, she is a Marketing Communications Specialist and holds a degree in Mass Communications and Media from Ramapo College of New Jersey. For additional information please contact Michelle at (888) 478-6747 x286 or mlb@storis.com.

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Your Voice

Coconis Furniture in South Zanesville, OH, knows a thing or two about working with family. They have been a family-owned and operated business since the doors first opened in 1927. With the third and fourth generation of the Coconis family running the business, RetailerNOW wanted to know how they make it all work. Owner Randy Coconis, and his son Bo, sat down with RetailerNOW and told us the truth about working with family. RetailerNOW:

What’s it like working with your family?

RetailerNOW: Randy,

did you have your sons go through a formal training when they entered the business, or did you throw them to the wolves?

Randy: [Laughs] It’s awesome. I am fortunate to have both sons working in the business. It is very gratifying, and it obviously gives me a little light at the end of the tunnel. I have already cut back and am enjoying life outside of work. I feel comfortable—I guess when it’s your last name on the building, you care a little more about the business than a hired manager would. It has been very gratifying and fun. We travel a lot together to conference, other stores and markets. Bo has come a long way in a very short amount of time, and Chad has been here 14 years, and is general manager. Bo: We all get along really well. The business sort of fell in my dad’s lap when his dad suddenly passed away, so he had to make a decision on what to do with the business—continue it or go some other direction. There are definitely some times where things come up and depending on if something is wrong, we talk it out. But we have a good relationship, and we trust one another. As long as one of us is here, we feel confident that the work is getting done. From that standpoint, my dad has been able to get out of the store more than he has been able to in the past. If there is a disagreement between us, dad still prevails with his thoughts. He gets to make the final decision—he hasn’t given that up yet. Randy: Management came from me and from on the job training—the school of hard knocks. Bo is part of an Impact Consultant Sales Manager group, which he has been a part of for about a year, and that helps him get some leadership skills from outside of the business. For the most part, it has been on the job training and learning from me. To their advantage, my father never had a plan to retire, he didn’t have a plan of succession, and while we don’t have a written plan, the boys know it is in their hands when it does switch over. It is their opportunity to take everything over.

Bo: To be honest, no. I have also thought that if I wasn’t golfing, I would come back to work at the store. Fortunately I have always seen the store as a successful business, which has always intrigued me. That’s what I went to school for. I see a lot of opportunity and would love to open up a third store, hopefully by the end of the year. I feel like we have a good base to grow. It has been in my life, it’s been my blood. I have seen the passion that my dad has for it and the success that comes from it. It has helped drive me. My other driving factor is that I don’t want to let dad down. He has built it to what it is today, it is our opportunity to continue to grow it. 68

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RetailerNOW:

Bo, did you ever have any doubts about coming back into the family business?


Coconis Furniture South Zanesville, Ohio Founded in 1927 Two Stores – Third opening soon Employees: 62 www.coconisfurniture.com

RetailerNOW:

What advice do you have for others working in a family business?

Randy, Chad, Bo Coconis

Bo: My dad, Chad and I have a good relationship outside of work. We have different conversations out of work—we will still talk about furniture but it’s about different topics, and with a different tone. We talk about how can we make things better. Whereas when we are in the store, it’s about dealing with what is going on that day. The main thing is realizing that my dad has put his time, blood, sweat and tears into this passion, and I am just a newcomer. I try to learn every day from him because he has been successful enough to build this business. Any day and every opportunity I get a chance to learn, I take it. The more time we can spend with the people that have been in this business—reps, vendors, etc.—the better. It is important. I also think you need to ask why—be curious. If you make a decision or come up with an idea that gets shot down, ask why. Asking can lead you to make better decisions in the future. Last, you need to gain the trust of others. I am 27 years old. Yes, my last name is Coconis, obviously there was a job waiting for me if I wanted it, however, it is my job to earn the trust of the rest of organization through my work as opposed to my last name. I don’t want people to say, even though it might be said, that I got my job just because of my name. I want them to know me for how hard I work and say that they are proud that I don’t take it for granted. That person recognizes that I am here for one reason, to make the company grow and it is more than just my job.

Randy: I think some people want their kids to work in the business so bad that they force them into it. I never did that. I never asked Chad or Bo to work here—they did it on their own. I wanted them to make the choice to come here and be a part of it, not feel that they had to be part of it. Chad coached high school basketball for a few years—his goal was to be a coach and a teacher. He did that and found out that dealing with kids’ parents wasn’t the greatest thing in the whole world, so maybe the furniture business wouldn’t be so trying. Bo tried to be a professional golfer for a few years, and found out that wasn’t the easiest way in life either. He knew he had a future back in the store, and thought he would give it a try. That’s what I told both of them, give it a try. If you like it, stick around. If you don’t, see you later, go chase your dreams. Don’t put pressure on kids to come in. It may be right after college or a few years after college—let them experience something else and then think about the opportunity they have at home. See what advice Randy had for his sons and what Bo will do differently once his dad retires at www.retailerNOWmag.com.

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your move. make it count. At Zenith Global Logistics, even the smallest order receives laser-focused, meticulous product handling as it moves efficiently through our terminals and onto our company-owned trucks. Universal bar coding and exacting handling procedures are just the beginning of why our damage rate is less than 0.3% and our shipping accuracy stands at 99.99%. As for service, it’s always immediate — like a live person on the phone when you call and quick answers when you need information. And we’re fully CSA compliant. So when it’s your move, call on Zenith Global Logistics. We make sure Every Move Counts.

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800.937.3876

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Domestic LTL Freight // Domestic Warehousing // Domestic Home Delivery // International Home Delivery // Ocean Transportation // International Warehousing & Consolidation


Product Focus

The Accesory Market

Bold Dominates the Accessory Market Use Bold Accessories to Liven Your Showroom and Create Add-on Opportunities Bold colors and graphics are hot in the accessory market this fall. From lamps, to pillows and rugs, splashes of oranges, pinks, blues and browns will draw the consumer’s eye. Graffiti graphic prints are great to attract younger generations and urban customers. From the Coastal sea shells to the vibrant hand blown glass— STEIN WORLD introduces an eclectic new line of lamps. As varied and colorful as the generation that is buying them— SURYA showcases an amazing array of accessories in pillows, rugs, poufs, throws, and wall decor.

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GE Capital

WE’RE NOT JUST BANKERS, WE’RE BUILDERS. At GE Capital, we’re not just bankers, we’re builders. With 80 years of experience you can count on us to be there for you and your customers. Of course we bring great financing options, but we also bring you real expertise to help you grow store traffic and sales. Randy Stewart, Relationship Manager at GE Capital delivers proven industry expertise to Grand Home Furnishings. Randy Lundy, Sr. VP, CFO at Grand Home Furnishings knows that it’s the people at GE that make the difference. With GE Capital you can be sure people like Randy Stewart are ready to help you build your business every day. Stop just banking. And start building. gogecapital.com

Randy Lundy Sr. VP, CFO, Grand Home Furnishings

Randy Stewart Relationship Manager, GE Capital


Money Matters

Why Generation Y isn’t buying your products

By Christine Carter

A

s a 26-year-old consumer, I can tell you this: my attention is short, my demands are great and my purchases are diverse. I live in a day and age where social media apps, slogan tees and even Nike sneakers can be customized to fit my lifestyle. I represent Generation Y, or Millennials. While we seem fickle, limited and spoiled to most retail professionals, we’re quite the contrary. Our lifestyle and shopping habits will determine the sales revenue of the retail industry, affecting everyone from big-box retailers to mom-and-pop stores, for the next 15 years. To put it bluntly, if you’re uncomfortable with marketing to Generation Y, or refuse to understand our unique demographic, your store will not see 2020. To understand Generation Y is to overcome many obstacles in the retail industry. The retailers who are embracing and adapting to our needs are the retailers from which we are not only purchasing products and services. They also are the retailers we recommend to our parents, the Baby Boomers. Our generations combined account for more than half of all Americans, and while Generation Y purchases $150 billion in goods a year, we influence another $50 billion of Baby Boomer’s family purchases.

Where the money comes from In August 2009, the unemployment rate for workers between the ages of 16 and 19 reached 25.5 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But if we were unemployed, where did our money come from? Although our access to credit is limited, Generation Y has a love-hate relationship with credit cards. We love the instant gratification they bring when purchasing goods; however, we hate having to suffer the financial

consequences. Our education expenses, social desire for luxury goods and inability to save money make us very cash-poor. Additionally, we influence the purchasing decisions of Baby Boomers because our shopping patterns are somewhat similar. We have a very close relationship with Baby Boomers. We’re Mama’s boys and Daddy’s girls, and as a result we have financial ties with our indulgent parents. They are a financial support system, and they are the reason we stay single longer.

Shopping patterns of Generation Y Because our generation responds and adapts rather quickly to social changes, we have emerged from the recession as “Recessionistas”, informed shoppers who stick to tight budgets while managing to stay trendy and cultured. We’re looking for inexpensive versions of the items we desire and durable versions of the items we need. In addition to buying necessities and spending as Recessionistas, we continually strive for goods that express our individuality. In just a decade, we’ve influenced the production of monogrammed screen tees, colored laptop computers and rhinestone cell phone accessories.

How to market to Generation Y If you’re able to keep these strategies in mind when marketing to Generation Y today, you’ll secure a lifelong customer in the future as we evolve into mature adults and parents. Appeal to our ego, our parents, AND THEN our senses. Your products and services should appeal to our individuality, but they should also be something we can share with our Baby Boomer parents. As an example, the Gap and Nordstrom offer products that

both generations find appealing. These brands have been successful because their strategic choice of music, lighting, color palette, layout and visual merchandising appeals to Generation Y. Minimize the television ads. We were glued to the tube as kids. We tune out traditional advertising methods. Convey your funny or emotional messages to Generation Y via guerilla, viral and social media marketing first, then supplement with traditional advertising. Another tip: We love word-of-mouth referrals and celebrity endorsements. Offer a new take on promotions. If your store is near a location where we spend the majority of our time (shopping malls, concert arenas, theme parks or movie theaters), incorporate these locations into your promotions. Consider cross-promoting with these venues as well.

What we’ve learned We’re self-important. We’re spoiled. We’re passionate. We’re multitalented. There may be multiple attributes to our personality, but retail remains the constant means through which we express ourselves. Yes, excellent customer service and quality products are important, but we’re buying products from companies whose campaigns are expansive. The only thing that’s predictable about us is our unpredictability. Our personalities and shopping patterns are so vastly different from what was previously exhibited by Generation X. Sorry, but we turned out to be nothing like our older siblings. Christine Carter is the owner of Epps Consulting, a premier retail marketing firm. Epps Consulting strives to help retailers with customized and affordable marketing and public relations campaigns all across the nation. Learn more at eppsconsulting.com & www.facebook.com/eppsconsulting.

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Our Associations gratefully recognize all of our supporters whose dedication and committment has strengthened our industry.

Acuity A. Mutual Insurance Company Advertising Concepts of America Affordable Furniture AICO/Amini Innovation Corp. Aireloom Beding American Express American Leather Ashley Furniture Industries, Inc. Aspenhome Associated Volume Buyers Banner Marketing Becker Designed, Inc. Bernards, Inc. Best Home Furnishings Braxton Culler, Inc. California Furniture Manufacturers Assoc. Capital Marketing Concepts Cargo Consolidation Services Celerant Technology Century Furniture Century Lighting Coaster Company of America Color Ad Cory Home Delivery Service Craftmaster Furniture, Inc. Cramco, Inc. Davis Direct DĂŠcor-Rest Furniture Ltd. Delivery Solutions Diakon Logistics Diamond Mattress Co. Dom Granat DSI Companies Ekornes Elements International Elite Leather Emerald Home Furnishings

Flexsteel Furniture of America Furniture Options Furniture Wizard FurnitureDealer.net GE Capital Great American Furniture Services Guardian Products Guardsman/The Valspar Corp. Harden Furniture Company High Point Market Authority Holland House Homelegance USA Home Furnishings Business Magazine Hooker Horich Parks Lebow Advertising Impact Consulting Services, Inc. Innovative Delivery Systems James Parker Insurance Associates Jofran Sales, Inc. Julius M. Feinblum Real Estate, Inc. Kincaid King Hickory Furniture Co Klaussner Home Furnishings Lane Home Furnishings Lazar Industries Lea Leggett & Platt, Inc. Liberty Furniture Lifestyle Enterprises Linon Home DĂŠcor Products Magnussen Home Mail America Massood Logistics Med-Lift Mobility MicroD, Inc. Mohawk Finishing Products, Inc.

NHFA

National Home Furnishings Association

WHFA

Western Home Furnishings Association

Myriad Software Natuzzi Americas, Inc. NetSertive Nourison Industries Okinus Credit Solutions Pacific Furniture Dealers Phoenix A.M.D. International, Inc. Profit Management Promotions PROFITsystems Protect-A-Bed Restonic Mattress Corp. SAP Retail Serta Mattress Companies Simmons Sleep-Ezz Source International, Inc./4 Sales Finance Sourthern Motion Sphinx by Oriental Weavers Standard Furniture Steve Silver Co. STORIS Management Systems Surya Tempur-Pedic The Uttermost Company Tropic Survival Advertising & Marketing TruckSkin, LLC Twin Star/Classic Flame Tyler Net, Inc. United Furniture Industries Valassis, Inc. Vaughan Furniture Co. Versatile Systems Wahlquist Management Corporation World Market Center Zenith Global

SEHFA SHFA

South Eastern Home Furnishings Association

Southern Home Furnishings Association

New England Chapter

To become an industry partner contact:

National Home Furnishings Association | 800.888.9590 Western Home Furnishings Association | 800.422.3778


Quick Fire Josie Sinclair at Tepperman’s WINDSOR, ONTARIO

i parin Gasa ia h p So y Wille at RC GAS, NV E V LAS

20 min ago You, Sean S, Betsy D, & Lauren Sarah M: This Family Room sale rocks!

. od laire S re the go o e in ag n&C 10 m G., Be et down h ie w o g You, H u have to : Yo Trina

stuff

The Power of a Check-in Have you heard of Foursquare? You can be sure your customer has, and she is using it to check in at your store.

..

g fast.

is goin

David Baxter at Jaeger’s Fine Furnishings WHITEFISH, MT 10 min ago You, Tessa E, Jake, and Tara M. Kev: Wow! Such a tremendous sale- doing the house!

Generations have always had the ability to share experiences—it just happened slowly through word of mouth. Today however, a consumer can share experiences instantly with their entire network of friends, acquaintances, co-workers and family. With the click of a few buttons, people can “check-in” to places and share their exact location. In 2010, Foursquare, a popular check-in service made available through mobile phones, had an astounding 380 milion plus check-ins! In that same year, check out a few random samples of check-ins at furniture stores:

PMD Furniture Direct, Inc.: 695 check-ins, Columbus, OH

RC Willey: 650 check-ins, Las Vegas, NV

Star Furniture: 385 check-ins, West Virginia

What does this mean for your store? Plenty! Consumers want to share where they shop and how their experience was. Now, you can allow your customers to connect with millions in the marketplace efficiently, easily and quickly to spread their word of mouth like a wildfire. Have you ever considered rewarding your customers for their check-ins? You should. Foursquare and Facebook both allow businesses to “create a special.” For example, if you check-in 5 times in 10 days at PMD Furniture Direct, Inc., you can earn a free goodie bag! How cool is that?! Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your specials: `` Try running two specials at once. That way you can target two different groups simultaneously. Such as one for your loyal customers and another for new ones.

`` Track the performance of your special. Keep a record of how things are going (Foursquare and Facebook provide you with this info) and adjust to make it as successful as possible. `` Try new things! Having a slow day? Add a check-in special (they go live right away) to get more people in the door.

`` Want to attract a lot of attention? Run a Swarm Special on Foursquare (it only unlocks if you pass a certain number of people checking in) so that people will bring their friends! In today’s integrated, cross platform world, it’s not our job as marketers to educate consumers on how to use these tools. It’s our job to provide an outlet for those who use these tools on a consistent basis.

Stats and figures provided by Foursquare Quick-Fire Marketing is brought to you by R&A Marketing. Armed with more than 25 years of furniture retail marketing experience as a full-service traditional and digital marketing company, R&A is the industry’s premier agency for retailers in the home furnishings and appliances/electronics industries. Visit us on the web www.ramarketing.com or email us at info@ramarketing.com.

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The Scoop

the scoop Dale Carlsen, Sleep Train, Named Entrepreneur of the Year® 2012 by Ernst & Young

Pilgrim Furniture City Awards Manufacturers’ Representative of the Year Award

Dale Carlsen, founder and CEO of Sleep Train, was awarded the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2012 Award in the Retail and Consumer Products category in Northern California. Dale was honored for demonstrating excellence and extraordinary success in such areas as innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their businesses and communities.

Todd Darch of Ashley Furniture was the recipient of this year’s Pilgrim Furniture City Manufacturers Representative of the Year Award. This award was created by Pilgrim Furniture City, headquartered in Southington, CT, as a way of recognizing manufacturer’s representatives who go the extra mile. Award winners are chosen for their professionalism, accessibility and for their understanding of the business.

“It’s an honor to receive this prestigious award on behalf of all of our Employee Owners, and be recognized among the nation’s top leaders for building a company that demonstrates continued growth and innovation and fosters strong relationships with our business partners and the greater community,” Dale said. “During the past 27 years, Sleep Train has grown from one store and a few employees to a multibranded company with more than 255 stores and 1,250 employee owners. We’ve created the Sleep Train Foster Kids program to have a significant impact on an important social cause, and became the only employee-owned sleep shop in the nation. I am proud to share this tremendous recognition with my entire team whose support has been both vital and inspiring.”

“Todd was chosen because he is knowledgeable about the products he sells and is diligent at training our sales staff and communicating with our merchandising and service departments. He visits our stores more than any other manufacturers representative to ensure his products are in good condition and that any questions we may have are answered immediately. Todd has done everything we could expect and more from a factory representative,” said David Bassett, vice president of sales.

Congratulations Dale for receiving such a prestigious honor!

Apollo Award Finalists The International Casual Furnishings Association has announced its finalists for the 2012 Apollo Awards, recognizing retail excellence in the sales and marketing of outdoor furnishings. Finalists must demonstrate outstanding accomplishments and commitment to customer service. WHFA member, Fishels in Portland, OR has been nominated in the multi-store category along with ABSCO Fireplace & Patio, Birmingham, AL, Greenhouse Mall, Austin, TX, Patios Plus, Rancho Mirage, CA and Yard Art Patio & Fireplace, Irving, TX. Nominees in the single store category include: Authenteak, Atlanta, GA, Daylight Home and Gardens, San Luis Obispo, CA, Kolo Collection, Atlanta, GA, Outdoor Elegance, La Verne, CA, and Sunshine Furniture, Vero Beach, FL. Finalists will be honored and the winners announced at a gala awards banquet on September 22, 2012, during the International Casual Furniture & Accessories Market in Chicago.

Share your latest news stories with us. We would love to hear from our retailers about what is going on in your area. 76

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Calendar

Calendar

Jaipur Rugs, Barcelona Collection

MARK YOUR CALENDAR FOR THESE INDUSTRY EVENTS

Las Vegas Market

Edison Furniture & Accessory Market

July 30 – August 3, 2012

August 19-21, 2012

Las Vegas, NV www.lasvegasmarket.com

Edison, NJ www.kemexpo.com

WithIT 2012 Conference

Mid-Atlantic Market

August 14-16, 2012

September 9-10, 2012

Raleigh, NC

Fredericksburg, VA

www.withit.org

www.kemexpo.com

Tupelo Fall Market

Dallas Total Home & Gift Market

August 16-19, 2012

September 8-10, 2012

Tupelo, MS www.tupelofurnituremarket.com

Dallas, TX www.dallasmarketcenter.com

Feature Online Shopping On Your Website E-Commerce Websites for Furniture Retailers and Manufacturers packages starting at

$399 per month

Call 1-877-536-4786 to sign-up

Visit www.Web4Retail.com for more info

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coming in the Fall. . . International Casual Furniture & Accessories Market

High Point Market

September 20-23,2012

October 13-18, 2012

Chicago, IL www.casualmarket.com

High Point, NC www.highpointmarket.org

more industry dates online at retailerNOWmag.com Henredon, Yvon Dining Table from the Acquisitions Paris collection 2012

ADVERTISER

PHONE

WEBSITE

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

PAGE#

Arason Enterprises

(410) 703-4412

fu-chest.com

46

Ashley Furniture Industries

(608) 323-3377

ashleyfurniture.com

60

Bernard’s

(800) 861-6130

bernardsinc.com

Cresent Fine Furniture

(615) 452-1671

cresent.com

www.facebook.com/cresent.furniture

Emerald Home Furnishings

(800) 685-6646

emeraldhome.com

www.facebook.com/EmeraldHome

03

@BernardsInc

52

@cresentfurn

46

Diakon

(703) 530-0677

diakonlogistics.com

www.facebook.com/DiakonLogistics

64

Furniture Wizard

(619) 869-7200

furniturewizard.com

www.facebook.com/furniturewizard

57

GE Capital

(800) 888-9590

nhfa.org

GE Capital

(800) 422-3778

whfa.org

72

High Point Market

(336) 869-1000

highpointmarket.org

www.highpointmarket.org/facebook

72

International Casual Furniture Market

(312) 527-7764

casualmarket.com

http://tinyurl.com/casualmarket

Las Vegas Market

(888) 962-7469

lasvegasmarket.com

www.facebook.com/wmclv

Leggett & Platt

(417) 358-8131

leggett.com

MicroD

(800) 964-3876

microdinc.com

www.facebook.com/microdinc

Myriad

(800) 676-4243

myriadsoftware.com

http://tinyurl.com/myriadFB

@hpmarketnews

07

@worldmarketctr

05

@LeggettSleep

25

29

@microdinc

Back Cover 63

Nourison

(201) 368-6900

nourison.com

www.facebook.com/nourison

@nourison

Inside Back

Omnia

(909) 393-4400

omnialeather.com

http://tinyurl.com/omnialeather

@OmniaLeather

47

Planned Furniture Promotions

(800) 472-5242

pfpromotions.com

14

Progressive Furniture

(419) 446-4500

progressivefurniture.com

Profit Management Promotions

(215) 343-8700

pmpsales.com

www.facebook.com/pmpsales

@PowerfulSales

49

55

PROFITsystems

(716) 894-1414

profitsystems.com

www.facebook.com/profitsystems

@PROFITsystems

20

R&A Marketing

(888) 225-0776

ramarketing.com

www.facebook.com/RAmarketing

@RAmarketing

77

Savvy Rest

(866) 856-4044

savvyrest.com

www.facebook.com/savvyrest

@SavvyRest

13

@sertamattresses

9

@SimplyAmish

47

Sealy

(336) 861-3500

sealy.com

www.facebook.com/sealy

Serta

(888) 557-3782

serta.com

www.facebook.com/sertamattress

Simply Amish

(217) 268-4504

simplyamish.com

51

Surya

(877) 275-7847

surya.com

www.facebook.com/SuryaSocial

Tempur-Pedic

(859) 259-0754

tempur-pedic.com

www.facebook.com/TempurPedic

@TempurPedic

58

Inside Cover

Twin-Star

(888) 776-2490

twinstarhome.com

www.facebook.com/twinstarintl

@twinstarhome

47

Truckskin

(877) 866-7546

truckskin.com

www.facebook.com/TruckSkin

@TruckSkin

64

Web4Retail

(877) 536-4786

web4retail.com

www.facebook.com/Web4Retail

@web4retail

78

@retailerNow

74

Zenith Global

(800) 937-3876

zenithcompanies.com

www.facebook.com/ZenithGlobalLogistics

NHFA / WHFA Sponsors

(800) 888-9590

retailerNOWmag.com

www.facebook.com/retailernow

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A quick dose of fun facts, random trivia and useful (or useless) bits of info

The Now List Vegas Baby The percentage of visitors who visit Las Vegas to gamble is 13 percent. The percentage of visitors who end up gambling during their stay is 87 percent!

40 Million Americans are Foreign-born The number of foreign-born people in the United States is at an all-time high, at 40 million—an increase of about 9 million since the 2000 census. The 2010 census put the total U.S. population at almost 309 million. (Source: CNN)

The U.S. drinks about 66 billion cups of coffee a year!

55% of consumers

share their online purchases socially on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest

$30 billion

According to some estimates, Americans are sitting on $30 billion worth of unredeemed gift cards.

Staying awake for 17 hours is the same for your body as drinking 2 glasses of wine.

$128 billion

In 2011, Apple’s total sales were $128 billion. That’s more than the GDP of about 160 nations around the world! The average person has over 1,460 dreams a year.

83% of consumers

base their decision to purchase an item on both star ratings and written review comments.

Chocolate is associated with the release of serotonin, the hormone that makes you feel relaxed, calm and happy. Internet Creating Jobs

The animal responsible for the most human deaths worldwide is the mosquito.

80

J U LY | 2 0 1 2

Internet establishes 2.6 jobs for every job it renders obsolete.

www.retailerNOWmag.com

2,920 ft Sofa

According to the Guinness World Records, The longest sofa measured 2,920 ft. 9 in. and was manufactured in Sykkylven, Norway, in June 2009. The sofa was displayed across a bridge and took 20 local furniture factories to build it.


He gave up his house, car, stereo, cell phone, computer, and even his pet monkey... But there are some things you can’t give up.

Om is where the Nourison rug is!

One source. Unlimited possibilities... SHOWN HERE: Nourison 2000 (2318 ROS). Redefine luxury with Nourison’s most popular hand-made signature collection featuring Persian and European traditional designs. The dense pile, splendid patterns, deeply compelling textures and intriguing aesthetics are certain to command immediate attention in any setting. 100% New Zealand Wool with Genuine Silk. Handmade. For over 40 years, Nourison has been the leading manufacturer and supplier of quality floorcovering from area rugs, carpets, one-of-a-kind originals and custom rugs to hospitality and commercial installations. A fully vertically integrated company, Nourison oversees almost every aspect of the manufacturing process from wool spinning to dyeing, weaving and finishing.

Call 1.800.223.1110 or visit www.nourison.com. See us at the Atlanta and Las Vegas markets this summer!


Las Vegas Market July 30 - August 3 WMC Building C-496

Premier Websites for the Furniture Industry For more than 20 years, MicroD has led the way with innovative furniture merchandising solutions. That’s why more than 85% of the Top 100 furniture brands and retailers rely on MicroD. We deliver the expertise, technology, and services to transform your online presence and drive customers to your stores.

Upcoming Market Seminar

• Visually Stunning Product Presentations • Engaging, Interactive User Experience • Powerful Room Planning & Personalization Tools • Integrated Promotions, Incentives & Hooks • Improved Search Results and Rankings • Latest Mobile Tagging Technology • Comprehensive Content Management Services • Mobile Friendly Website

Tuesday, July 31, 2012 | 10:30 am – 11:30 am PT Retailer Resource Center

Are You In The Driver’s Seat? Directing Traffic to Your Furniture Retail Site with Search Engine Marketing

www.microdinc.com solutions@microdinc.com 800.964.3876 ext. 2

RetailerNOW—July 2012  

Game on—meet the next generation of the industry.

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