The North American Association of Floor Covering Distributors (NAFCD), in partnership with the World Floor Covering Association (WFCA), said it will conduct a comprehensive research study called “Understanding the Needs of the Floor Covering Retailer.” The study is aimed at helping NAFCD members and their dealer customers develop a deeper understanding “of the pressure points in their channel of distribution,” the group said.

“Oftentimes, there occurs a lack of understanding between distributors and their customers,” said Jack Lindenschmidt, NAFCD president and director of product management for ISC Surfaces in St. Louis. “By more completely understanding the needs of their distribution partners, NAFCD distributors will be ready to modify their selling behavior, distribution policies and technology offerings to better align with their buyers’ ability to implement objectives in the marketplace.”

The study will focus on: distributor-retailer relationships; best practices for distributor and retailer policies and processes; retailer buying decisions; and effective marketing and sales promotions. It will be conducted by Jason Bader, managing partner of the Distribution Team and president of the Specialty Tools and Fasteners Distributor Association (STAFDA).

“We hope this study and subsequent presentations will help facilitate better communication and understanding between the members of NAFCD and the distribution channel,” noted Fred Reitz, vp NAFCD and vp operations at JJ Haines and Co.

The study will be unveiled during NAFCD’s 38th Annual Conference on September 22-24, 2009, at the Renaissance Glendale Hotel in Glendale, Ariz. As part of the study and presentation, Bader will emcee a moderated roundtable discussion with retail floor covering customers.

“We are extremely pleased to co-sponsor this study with NAFCD,” said Chris Davis, president and CEO of the WFCA. “In these challenging times, the more we can do to help our members’ firms with ideas and solutions to survive and thrive, the better and stronger the entire industry will be.”