Indelval rubber flooring from CBC Flooring

Twenty-eight percent of respondents in our exclusive survey have annual resilient sales of $200,000 or more. The demand for alternative floor coverings affects the growth of the resilient floor segment.

Survey respondents felt product reliability and quality (41%) was the most influential attribute when deciding to sell or promote a particular brand of resilient flooring. Rated second was product design and styling at 35%. Durability, brand or company reputation, sales rep support, and customer requests are all significantly more important in the decision making process than last year.

Congoleum’s new Connections glueless floor system in 6” x 48” planks

Forty-three percent of our panelists anticipate resilient flooring sales to increase in 2010 while 35% see the segment remaining the same. Reasons cited for the increase are price/value/affordability, followed by economy/business recovering and pent-up demand.

Overall, the sales volume increased to $246,025 from $195,947 in 2009. The average ticket amount per sale jumped to $1,798 from the $1,271 reported in 2009. Resilient covering sales generate about the same (40%) amount of profit as other hard surface flooring options.

GTP International’s Free Fit lvt

Resilient sheet continues as the category leader at 32%, followed by fiberglass reinforced vinyl at 20%, luxury vinyl tile at 16%, tile at 15%, linoleum at 7% and homogeneous sheet at 6%. The fiberglass reinforced vinyl category grew by 2% while the resilient sheet sector added 1%.

In 2009, about almost two in five respondents indicated resilient flooring was the fastest growing product category sold in their stores.(Chart 1)Additionally, the residential replacement segment (51%) continues to be the leading source of sales among flooring retailers followed by 21% in the contract/commercial segment.(Chart 2) 

Similar to the previous two years results, respondents report the residential replacement market as the fastest growing part of their business last year. The residential replacement market is anticipated to continue as the fastest growing segment during 2010. Fewer anticipate growth for the contract/commercial segment, while more expect growth in the building/new construction area versus previous years.(Chart 3)

Respondents indicate there is a significant increase in Internet use to promote floor coverings. Just under one-third (30%) of dealers are using the Internet, up from 24% last year. Also, 10% sell products directly on the Internet compared to 7% in 2009.

Retailers continue to purchase resilient flooring from an average of four suppliers. Here’s a closer look at the supplier usage: one supplier, 7%; two suppliers, 21%; three suppliers, 21%; four suppliers, 16%; five suppliers, 16%; and six or more suppliers, 19%.

Two-thirds (66%) of respondents buy through flooring distributors, followed by domestic manufacturers, 24%; and import manufacturers, 10%. Compared to 2009, respondents are working less with distributors and more with domestic manufacturers. 

The top selling brands of resilient flooring are Mannington (26%) and Armstrong (24%), followed by Congoleum and Tarkett (both at 12%).

In the luxury vinyl tile category, Mannington took top honors at 25%, followed by Congoleum, 16%; and tied at 13% are Tarkett/Nafco and Armstrong.

In the rubber flooring category, Johnsonite was the top-seller at 45%, followed by Roppe at 16% and Burke, 8%.

Resilient floor coverings are being recommended to customers more frequently than ever before according to survey participants. Our study finds that the flooring dealer/contractor recommendation on resilient floor covering brands heavily influences their customers.

Customers rate resilient flooring highest on ease of maintenance and selection/styling, although all characteristics receive a high percentage of very good or excellent ratings.

After the purchase/installation of flooring, the top two concerns heard by retailers from their customers are denting/cuts/scratches/tears and maintenance.

NOTE:This article is a snapshot of a new comprehensive study examining the resilient flooring market. The conclusions are based on the opinions and preferences of floor covering retailers who agreed to participate in the survey. The survey was conducted and findings were compiled by Clear Seas Research, a division of BNP Media, which is also the parent company ofNational Floor Trends.

A total of 211 qualified respondents completed the entire survey between February 10 and March 6, 2010. This in-depth research study provides up-to-date information on key issues and market trends analyzed over a six-year period, beginning in 2003. The comprehensive trended report is available from Clear Seas Research.

For information about ordering, or to find out more about Clear Seas Research services, contact Steven George at