KISSIMMEE, FLA.— Independent retailers are gathering here December 6-9, 2018, for the grand reveal of Edge—the retail strategy Mohawk has conceived to help independent retailers accelerate their competitive edge in the face of today’s fast-paced and changing retail world. 

“Independent flooring retailers are some of the best entrepreneurs in America,” said Seth Arnold, vice president of residential marketing, Mohawk. “For the independent specialty retail community, there is not a one-strategy-fits-all approach. You can’t just say, ‘Do it our way or you won’t succeed.’”

To aid retailers in their quest for major sales impact, Mohawk is offering retailers a variety of components to choose from: powerhouse brands to attract new consumers and accelerate sales, first access to Mohawk’s 2019 product introductions, and new brand websites that have the ability to connect six million shoppers to specialty retail stores. 

Mohawk will deliver highly qualified customer leads to retailers who strategically use Mohawk to help drive sales in their marketplaces, Arnold said. The company pulled together some basic, measurable benchmarks—based on volume, mix, brand and service—that will help to determine how customer leads are funneled to each independent retailer. The benchmarks help to reward retailers who embrace the Mohawk brand and put the focus on the consumer experience. The concept hinges on the idea that with consistent quality messaging throughout the consumer journey, retailers are more likely to close more sales.  

“For retailers who strategically agree with Mohawk on product selection, the variety of product they sell, the message consistency of using our brands, and customer service—we want to send as many customers to those stores as possible,” Arnold said. 

There are four benchmarks that help to determine how retail stores will be rewarded with these customer leads. 

“The first thing we look at is purchase volume,” Arnold said. “Can we find a retailer in that consumer’s hometown or their local market that has good Mohawk product selection? You measure volume, and that’s a pretty traditional measurement.”

The second measurement is product mix, which includes the variety of product, both hard and soft surface, a retailer carries in their store. The third benchmark is how retailers support Mohawk’s branded stories, such as SmartStrand and RevWood, through advertising in their local markets. This is measured through co-op spend or investments in Mohawk Floorscapes and ColorCenter merchandising and marketing alignments.   

“If someone is a Floorscapes or ColorCenter account, they are using our brands in their stores, and they pay an annual maintenance fee; that is a very measurable benchmark,” Arnold said. “You can also measure Omnify, an online version of a store. You can look at the financial commitment retailers are making to our brands, and how much co-op advertising they have invested in, and we can make a pretty good guess on which retailers will continue to tell that branded story when she comes to the store.”

The last benchmark is customer service. 

“Mohawk wants to reward retailers and send consumers to stores that have a great reputation,” Arnold said. “We have thousands of amazing retailers who have great reputations, and that’s measurable, too.”

Retailers can pick and choose the components that will work for them to maximize impact in their local markets. 

“We would like them to do more business with us, but if they decide a private-label strategy works better for them than our branded product, but they are still selling hard and soft surfaces, we will reward them for their volume and their mix,” Arnold said. “We are trying to support the retailer based on how they want to go to market at the highest level possible.”