Saturday, October 4, 2008

The Face of Competition

As promised in my last post I will show you what floor covering store competition looks like. There are many, many reputable companies in Dalton, Georgia and I am going to show you just a few.

Myer's Carpet Company has been a fixture in the community for over 50 years and offer many high end products such as wool and custom area rugs.

Beckler's Carpet has also been around for the
better part of half a century. Beckler's is also a
family owned company offering honesty, integrity and a wide assortment of floor coverings.

Next we have Carpets of Dalton, long established as one of the largest in the country. Not only do they offer all sorts of floor coverings, a wide selection of high end furniture and appliances can be found under "The Big Sign".

Georgia Carpet Industries is owned by a
friend and has experienced tremendous
growth over the last couple of decades. GCI
offers a huge inventory of carpet, vinyl, and other floor coverings mainly to dealers and builders, but sports a full
showroom for the retail customer.

Another decades old company and also a friend of
mine is Owen Carpet Company. They, like the rest of us, maintain a huge inventory of floor coverings to service their wholesale carpet customers.

One of two Carpet Express locations in the area. (a Washington state company)
felt they needed a store way down here in
the southland.

And of course American Carpet
Wholesalers of Georgia. We needed more of a warehouse location to accomadate many trucks on a daily basis. Although many customers come to our showroom on a regular basis.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Dalton Georgia Carpet Outlets

This post is more about competition and competitor pressure than about touting Dalton, Georgia and Dalton Georgia's famous carpet outlets. It is well documented that to save big bucks when you buy floor coverings, you need to buy carpet or buy flooring from one of over one hundred shops along the I-75 corridor thru North Georgia. Again, I must mention that is so documented that "The Today Show" broadcast live from the area a few years back. They did not broadcast from any one outlet or recommend any one carpet outlet over another. Simply stated, if you want to buy floor covering cheap, then a Dalton Georgia Carpet Outlet is the place.

Most of the flooring outlets in the area peacefully coexist. Unlike a floor store in any particular local market where a competing carpet store may be miles away. At multiple exits on I-75, a shopper can literally choose from scores of stores within walking distance. No matter where a floor covering store or carpet dealer is located in our great country of free enterprise, they will never see competition this strong. Yet we all tolerate each other with minimal animosities. 

Although most floor dealers in the area provide excellent customer service and support, our main attribute is discount carpet prices or wholesale flooring. If a carpet dealer in Anywhere, USA provides a great turnkey solution with very little customer participation, then that is their strong point and that is what they need to sell. What we do in Dalton, Georgia requires a great deal of consumer participation and is, quite frankly, not for everyone. Our customers are more demanding and extremely price conscious. 

In my years of retail carpet sales and management career outside of Dalton, Georgia, I cannot remember a single instance of losing a sale to a carpet outlet in Dalton. If a consumer gave me any indication that Dalton, Ga. was my competitor, that is when I quit selling price and started selling my store's attributes. Most consumers would rather deal locally, unless they know the outside entity to be trustworthy and stand behind the products they sell. 

Want to see what competition is? Check out my next post.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Stainmaster and Shaw Carpet Cushion (Padding)

Much has been written about the importance of quality carpet cushion. Good or better carpet padding provides both acoustical and insulative properties as well as adding longevity to your carpet investment. Some carpet cushions will go a step or 2 farther by increasing your carpet manufacturer's warranty.

Stainmaster carpet cushion (when used under stainmaster carpet) will add years to the Stainmaster carpet wear warranty. It will add 3 years wear protection to carpets made of Stainmaster nylon and 5 years to the wear warranty of carpets made of Stainmaster Ultralife nylon.

Shaw Industries produces 2 exceptional carpet cushions. Premium Touch 6lb carpet cushion and Ultimate Touch 8lb carpet cushion. If you use either of these carpet pads under a Shaw residential carpet, Shaw Industries will double (that's double) the wear warranty of that particular carpet. Shaw apparrently has great condidence in both their carpet and carpet cushion.

Carpet cushion by both manufacturers are available at American Carpet Wholesalers. When purchasing carpet, be sure to ask about these carpet life saving paddings.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

INC Magazine Recognition

For the second year in a row, INC magazine has recognized American Carpet Wholesalers of Georgia as one of the fastest growing companies in America. Last year we were number 4060 on a list of 5000 and this year we improved our market position by coming in at 3489 on the list.

With so many bankruptcies and company failures, how did we manage to not only stay on the list, but also improve our ranking. It is the attitude of our team members. They believe without question that our company is the best. It is our customers who have given us such great customer reviews and recommended our company to family and friends. It is offering a great value on name brand floors at a time when getting the most for your dollar is important. It is our suppliers who have continued to support us. It is all of these things and more that helps this company continue to thrive and outpace the competition.

Last year we were honored to be named to list. This year we are honored, humbled, and very thankful for the recognition. It would not be possible without great team members. Congratulations belong to them.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Questions about Carpet Brands and Styles

Some customers get confused when shopping locally at local home centers and at different retails stores on mill labels:

Karen S. of Sioux City, IA wrote:

I'm looking to carpet 3 bedrooms in my home. I found a great color at a local home center (name omitted) and at another(name omitted), It had the same manufacturer's name but the pattern names were different. I know it was the same because the color was so unique. Why were the names different and why can't I find either on your site?

Karen S------

Hello Karen,

The manufacturers do this so as to give each dealer a unique product to prevent price wars and protect the profit margin of not just the home centers but also of the retail flooring stores that do battle daily with the big box stores in your area. It is understandable from a cost of inventory standpoint of the manufacturers. They use a master inventory number for the product and when an order is placed, simply label it for the ordering stores sample name. It is a common practice and all mills do it. From a consumers standpoint, it hinders comparison shopping. This is referred to as a "Private Label".

Why can't you find it on our site? It's probably there or on one of our price lists, but as the name assigned to our account. Usually, but not always, there is nothing unique about the carpet. Manufacturing specifications of a carpet are limited. With enough specifications and our experience in dealing with carpet, we can usually identify it as one of our products and provide you with a competitive price quote.

I hope I have cleared up some of the confusion and I our staff is available to try indentify the carpet and give you the best deal for your money.


Jerry Bryson
ACWG, Inc.

Friday, August 1, 2008

It was July - So what happened?

For as long as I can remember, July has been the worst month of the year for floor covering sales. "It's July, you may as well take a vacation," was the phrase most oft used in our industry. In years before the whole town of Dalton, GA shut down. Restaurants, dry cleaners, tire dealers, it did not matter. The whole town was on vacation. There are over 100 carpet outlets here, and the majority closed for the week of July 4th. Sales were miserable and the state of the economy was not a factor.

Dalton Georgia Carpet Outlets have long been famous for floor covering discounts and wholesale carpet prices. So famous in fact that "The Today Show" broadcast live from the area as the place to buy floor coverings. People would drive from 100's of miles away to buy floor covering. But not in July.

Normally when the calender shows July 1, I go into a state of depression. There are only meager sales but the overhead keeps on rolling. This year was no different July came and I made adjustments to expenses to try and minimize the pain. But wait, the first week was good and then the second week was OK. The third week was great and so was the fourth. This was something I had never witnessed, a great month of July! In fact I had to go back 2 years to find any month that American Carpet Wholesalers had more sales. So what happened to make July 2008 such a great month?

Nothing really stands out. No single product really stood out as the reason. No extra large sales. I spent less on advertising. The only thing I see at present is we had a tremendous amount of customer referrals, which relates directly to my previous post about customer reviews and doing the right thing.

Accolades must be given to our whole team. Sales, customer relations and order fulfillment. I have previously stated our team was the best and this just reaffirms my belief. Needless to say, I am a happy camper and so are my creditors!

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Don't Be Afraid of Customer Reviews

........... unless you have something to be afraid of.

A customer review system is the single most important way to improve any business. We love to know when we have fulfilled an order in such a way that the customer wants to tell the world. Be it good or bad. We have two separate independent review portals that give us a good barometer of what kind of shopping experience our customers had. On one, our satisfaction rating is 4.6 out of 5 ,and the other it is 4.8 out of 5. I will not be happy until they are both 5 out of 5.

I do not have time to respond to each and every one of them, but I do respond to negative feedback. Not to make excuses, but to make the customer believe we appreciate the feedback and to promise we will do better. We have kept those promises. Since our last negative feedback we have raised those scores from 4.3 out 5 and 4.5 out of 5 respectively. I am proud of my crew that is in charge of maintaining our customer relations. They are Monica Cunningham, LeAnda Seay, Shirin Rana, and Tammy Anderson.

Improving those scores was not just a simple matter of delivering the order on time. It involves staying in touch with the customer all thru the order process. Let them know if there will be any delays, what day to expect the delivery, and make them aware of what to expect and what to do in case there is a problem. One customer gave us a 4 out of 5 for one simple correctable reason. She got the order a day early than she anticipated, she saved a lot of money, the product was beautiful in her home, so what was the reason? We failed to notify her that the order was shipped and it caught her not prepared to receive the order. We acknowledged our shortcomings and promised to do better. She has since placed another order and this time we received a 5 out of 5 from her.

We are not a perfect company. Our team is made up of human beings, computers, and third party vendors and transportation companies. We do our best to keep orders from falling thru the cracks. But when one does, we try to identify the crack and seal it.

Sometimes it hurts the bottom line to do what is right. but as a service company, if we or any other company are not prepared or willing to service a customer's needs, there will soon not be any customers to service.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Quick-Step Laminate Rebates

I almost forgot to post info on the Quick Step Laminate Flooring promotion going on July 1st thru September 30. Consumers get from $100 - $150 via mail in rebate directly from Quick Step depending on the floor you choose. A purchase of Quick Step Elegance, Quick Step Eligna, Quick Step Classic Elite, or Quick Step Classic will get you $100 from Quick-Step. A purchase of Quick Step Arte, Quick Step Perspective, Quick Step Linesse or Quick Step Quadra will get you $150. Certain restrictions apply and a minimum purchase 0f 300 sq ft is required.

A great promotion for a great laminate floor.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Laminate Flooring. Is one brand better?

At ACWG, we offer laminate flooring from all the most recognizable names. Quick Step Laminate Floors, Pergo Laminate Floors, Mohawk Laminate Floors, Shaw Laminate Floors, and Mannington Laminate Floors are our best sellers and most widely known. But recently we have seen strong sales of Berry Floor Laminate, Alloc Laminate Floors, and Tarkett Laminate Floors with their new product line.

For me to make a determination as to which brand is better or identify a single product that is better will take quite a bit of thought. The obvious answer I would want to give as a retailer would be the brand that I sell the most of, which is Quick Step Laminate. But our sales are strong for Berry Floor, Mohawk Laminate Floors, and Alloc Laminates in that order. I am sure that our sales for Shaw Laminates would be as strong as the others, but we are not allowed to show our best price on our site.

Depending on what you're looking for in a new floor also determines which is better. For the realistic look of a real wood floor, I think that Quick Step, Berry Floor, and Tarkett have that market cornered. For commercial use, most brands have an answer but I would choose Alloc. After all, commercial laminate has been in their offerings from day one and some of their residential lines have commercial warranties. For cost conscious residential applications all brands have one in their line. We align ourselves in this area to Quick Step's "Steps 700" and "Classic 800" because the variety of colors and species look in those lines.

Scratch resistance, cleanabilty, and wear resistance are characteristics of just about all brands of laminate floors because of the nature of construction. We have sold millions of square feet of laminate flooring and the rate of product failure for those reasons have been miniscule. Failure from moisture is a different situation. Most laminates are susceptible, while some brands tout moisture resistant on some products but limit warranty on moisture. Laminate flooring in bathrooms is not a good idea.

These are strictly my opinions based on our sales and claims experience. I am sure there will wide and varied opinons depending on who you ask. Laminate floors in general is one of the best floors on the market and will give you years of service.

Asian Walnut Wood Flooring (Acacia)

Acacia Asian Walnut Wood Floors at great prices are now available at American Carpet Wholesalers.

Asian Walnut or Acacia is a very tough little tree common to the most arrid areas of Southeast Asia, India, Africa, and Austrailia. It is an enviromental friendly pod bearing tree with rich colors from golden to dark brown. Growing in such a harsh and hostile environment makes it 90% harder than oak and resists warping and cupping.

Many of our customers have asked about it, so we found the best value around and added it to our inventory. If you're looking for a floor with depth and vibrant color range, this is your floor.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Comments from Rug Rag

David from posted a comment about one of my posts. I welcome all comments and post them after reviewing for inappropriate content. I also reviewed David's site and highly recommend it for info about hand made oriental rugs. The site is quite informative about the care and cleaning of fine handmade rugs. They also offer an online appraisal service. We do not sell handmades on our site as we feel it is better left to the experts.

Check them out it is good information.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

......the best carpet...Part 2

Now that you know that I believe there is not a best carpet, only a best carpet for a particular application, let's explore the manufacturers. Is one better than the other? That depends on who you ask. Not too long ago we had hundreds of different manufacturers, but with industry consolidation over the last decade and a half, we now have only 3 or 4 major manufacturers owning 20-30 different brands collectively. Plus there are 15-20 independent reputable manufacturers in the U.S. and Canada. There are only a handful of companies that make the manufacturing equipment all these carpet mills use to produce their carpets. As well as just a handful of producers of the fibers used to make these carpets with some of the major manufacturers buying up these producers to better their market position.

So it really boils down to which carpet mills have the best quality control, is the most innovative in product development, and can keep the manufacturing cost down to produce a great value for the ever cost conscious consumer. Using my 35 years experience in the carpet and floor covering industry, Shaw Industries year after year has been the leader in producing cutting edge carpet styles while maintaining quality and cost controls that are second to no other carpet manufacturer. Shaw Carpet brands include such long established names as Cabin Crafts Carpet, Philadelphia Carpet, Queen Carpet, Sutton Carpet, Tuftex Carpet, and many commercial carpet mills.

My second favorite is Beaulieu of America. While green is in, Beaulieu has been producing enviro-friendly carpet for years. Just in the last 5 years I have seen their quality improve at a much faster pace than any other carpet manufacturer. Innovative styles and fibers have established Beaulieu Carpets as some of the finest in the world. In February of this year, Beaulieu intoduced their newest brand "Bliss by Beaulieu". This brand is not simply an acquisition, but a new launch geared to appeal to the female consumer. It will truly compliment their long existing brands such as Beaulieu Carpet, Coronet Carpet, Hollytex Carpet, and their many commercial carpet mills.

Dixie Home Carpets is coming of age with carpet lines geared to the core consumer as well as some upper end lines geared more toward designers. Of some of the major idependents, Kraus Carpet (a Canadian mill) is one of our favored suppliers. One of the California mills that has had great success is Royalty Carpet Mills and for specialty prints and florals, Milliken Carpet Mills cannot be beat. For carpet designed with kids in mind, it's Joy Carpets. There are several lesser known mills we deal with for value priced carpets Supreme Carpet, Cherokee Carpet, Southwind Carpet along with others.

There is my list of the best. If I have left any mill out, it was intentional. Next I will give my opinion on laminate floors and laminate brands.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

What is the best ... Carpet..Laminate..Hardwood..Tile? Part 1 Carpet

What is the best carpet? .. the best laminate...the best hardwood? ...the best tile? The question is put to me or my staff almost on a daily basis. The answer is pretty much the same for all the different flooring options. My opinion is that there is no best. Only a best choice for a particular application. Carpet as well as all the other flooring available are offered for both residential and commercial applications.

Your budget plays a big part in what product you choose. A carpet, laminate floor, hardwood floor, or vinyl tile floor can be found to fit just about any budget that will offer years of serviceability. Design choices and color schemes are somewhat limited in the lower price points, but good matches for your lifestyle are available nevertheless.

No matter what price range you are considering for carpet, you should never compromise the quality of the underlayment (padding). A good padding will make even the least costly carpet perform to its maximum ability. Thicker is not better, whether it's carpet or padding! Face weight typically has no bearing on durability. It is the density factor that is most important. No carpet padding should be used over 1/2" thick and 7/16" is the desired thickness recommended but most all carpet manufacturers and the Carpet and Rug Institute. For loop pile carpets (berber loop and multi-purpose loops) 3/8" and less is recommended. Minimum density of recommended pads should be no less than 6lbs and 8lbs for loop pile.

Shag or thick saxony plushes are not good choices for high traffic areas such as hallways, stairs and family rooms. For these areas a low profile, high density carpet is advised with the good low profile high density carpet padding. For bedrooms these carpets work well. Some of the more expensive ultra shags are better suited for area rugs. Berber loop and low profile cut and loop hybrids work well for all areas of your home.

Commercial carpets are made for moderate to heavy traffic. Most are extremely low profile from 1/4" to 3/8" thick with high density factors. Loop piles are typically installed with adhesive to prevent movement underneath. While low profile cut piles are generally installed over a carpet padding with density factors of 8-14 lbs. These are general requirements for general commercial use. Carpets are usually specified for the type and amount of anticipated foot traffic. Carpet tiles are suited for just about all commercial use and are available in many different patterns and colorways.

You can get more detailed information by visiting the Carpet and Rug Institute.

Part 2 will cover laminate floors.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Carpet Tiles for Home or Office

We have had several questions about the carpet tiles we offer. Although most are commercial carpet in nature, they can be used residentially. Depending on the pattern you will get a look that is modern and is quite attractive, not to mention great wearability. Plus, they make for a great do it yourself project.

We offer carpet tiles in several different options. For larger jobs or continuity (you may need more at a later date), we offer DesignTek Modular Carpet Tiles, Shaw Philadelphia Carpet Tiles, Shaw Queen Carpet Tiles, and for day care, kids rooms, and schools we offer Joy Carpet Tiles (most available in broadloom as well).

For tremendous savings, we stock almost 500,000 square feet of 1st quality overruns in various colors and patterns in our "Carpet Tile Clearance Center". Savings on these carpet tiles can be anywhere from 50-80% of their original value. Availablility for these tiles are limited to inventory on hand, although from time to time we will have access to some of the same patterns.

Installation methods vary depending on application. Kathryn (in the above pics) is using tape dots. These are sticky on both sides and work better on smooth surfaces. They do not work very well on concrete. For commercial applications and for concrete, we (and most manufacturers) recommend a pressure sensitve adhesive. This type of adhesive is releasable in case you want to rotate the tiles from high traffic areas to prolong carpet life. You apply the adhesive the same way as the dots, make about a 3 to 4 inch diameter dot on each corner and 1 or 2 more dots in the center.

Overall, for durability and ease of intallation, carpet tiles cannot be beat.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Customer Feedback

Typically most of our customer reviews and feedback are posted on American Carpet Wholesaler's website. Here are a couple that were sent directly to customer service I would like to share:

To: LeAnda Seay

We needed 8 cartons of Quik-Step laminate flooring to finish a project we had started 3 years ago (finances and time delay). I found the exact match, and on sale at that, ordered 8 cartons and they arrived within 10 days. We had them delivered to my husbands workplace, which cut shipping. We were able to finish our project and still saved almost $200; without compromising product or quality. With the price of gas and the value of your time, this was ideal. I highly recommend shopping their products and giving them a try. We were thrilled with our results.

Dean & Ronda Rustad

To: LeAnda Seay
Subject: Thank You

Dear LeAnda,

I just wanted to let you know how please I am with the service of your company. The flooring arrived just as you predicted and the delivery guy was so nice and helpful. I have had the floor layed and it's absolutely beautiful, much prettier than I imaginaged. I'm sending you an attachment of what the floor looks like in my kitchen.

Thank you and the ones that helped with the shipping of the floor. I have already recommended you to my sister, which she will be ordering soon.

Thanks again,
Karen Young

I wish to thank Mr. and Mrs. Rustad and Karen Young for their kind words and LeAnda Seay for a job well done. Keep up the good work.

Quick Step Laminate and Congoleum DuraCeramic Tile are two of the products in which we maintain a huge inventory. Most orders can be shipped out the same day on these products.

Armstrong Raises Hardwood Prices

Press Release From Armstrong:

Lancaster, PA, July 1, 2008 – Armstrong has raised prices on select Armstrong and Bruce hardwood products, effective immediately. Increases in raw materials, transportation, and surging prices for oil and natural gas have necessitated this increase,” said Paul Murfin, vice president of sales

Source: Floor Daily

Products affected at American Carpet Wholesalers include the Bruce Hardwood Floor line and the Armstrong Hardwood line by Hartco.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Our Team is THE Best

At least that is my opinion. I think it would be in order to introduce you to some of our key team members. I do not like to refer to them as employees because they do not work for me. They work for themselves and for our customers.

Here we go. Eddie Caldwell is in charge of our IT department and programmer extraordinaire. He is our CTO. Next we have Greg Dykes. Greg does a lot of things, he is sales manager, oversees most warehouse functions and also is on the sales service desk most of the time. Oh, he also keeps our warehouse cat (Jessie) fed. Leanda Seay (everyones go to for answers) keeps our bills paid while backing up sales service. Monica Cunningham, our customer relations and claims analyst and is another back up to sales service. Shirin Rana is our product manager. She fights a never ending battle of keeping products updated on our site as well as backing up sales service. Alicia Metcalf is one of our sales service pros and never complains about anything. Brandi Shelton and Greg Hayes are sales and sales service and both get great customer feedback. Tammy Anderson processes both incoming and outgoing shipments and you guessed it, backs up sales service. Gloria Kirkland is also in accounting. Keeping the check book balanced, the credit cards paid and the IRS happy. Oh, and making calls for me that I don't want to make.

Assisting Shirin with new products and product update are Tiffany Kennedy, Alicia Wnorowski, and Brooke Pacheco. They are responsible for everything from product photos and product specification to making sure our inventory is properly marked and located. In our customer fulfillment department we have Fernando Delgado, Audiel Mondragon, and Jonathan Barrett. They make sure that our shipments are received properly and shipped in a timely fashion.

There you have it. A great group of people. It would be tough to function without any of them.

Mohawk To Raise Hardwood Prices

Press Release From Mohawk:

Dalton, GA, June 26, 2008—Mohawk Industries has announced a price increase on select hardwood products ranging from 3 to 5 percent effective July 14.

A letter announcing the price increase was sent to Mohawk dealers in mid-June.

“Increases in raw materials, transportation, and energy have required this action,” said Bob Leahy, senior vice president, hard surfaces.

Source: Floor Daily

We will post our price changes for Mohawk Hardwood Floors as soon as they come available.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Money is not the only thing Green!

Today I met with manufacturers' reps to consider two green product lines that we currently do not offer. Cork Floors and Bamboo Floors (Well, we have Bamboo, but this line is priced really great). I am meeting with them next week at their corporate showroom to negotiate final pricing and how much inventory I will commit to. At American Carpet Wholesalers, we stock a great deal of the products we sell. Currently, over $1,000,000. We do this for better pricing but also to get the products to our customers as quickly as possible. Usually on an order we have in stock ships the same day.

I will keep you posted as to when the new products are on the website.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Bliss by Beaulieu

Well we finally have started getting the new Bliss by Beaulieu carpet line on our website. Images are coming a bit slow as we have not received our showroom display yet. Hopefully it will arrive soon. We are anxious to start showing the products to our customers.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

More Price Increases Announced

Over the last few days more price increases have been announced. Mohawk Industries and Shaw Industries have announced price increases of 3-5% on their hard surface products (laminate floors, hardwood floors, and tile products). The Congoleum Corporation announced a 3-6% increase on their entire product line which includes items such as DuraCeramic, DuraStone ,Duraplank and sheet vinyl flooring. Kraus Carpets has also announced price increases on their entire product line. Earlier Quick-Step Laminate (Unilin, owned by Mohawk Industries) also announced a price increase. Beaulieu has announced a price increase on their carpet line. And as I am writing this post, I just received notification from Shaw Industries the price increase will apply to their residential carpet and commercial carpet as well. Mohawk inevitably will follow suit. All of these increases take effect mid July.

Keep in mind, we just had all these increases less than 2 months ago. All of this is directly the result of oil prices. I find it very difficult to understand why Congress will not lift the ban on offshore drilling, because it looks like this trend is not going away any time soon.

We at American Carpet Wholesalers as well as some of the other reputable online flooring merchants are doing all we can to keep our prices affordable to the consumer. All the while some of the manufacturers are trying to establish minimum adverised pricing. What's next, minimum selling prices?

Rest assured, if we cannot show you our lowest price, we will certainly tell you and you can always call us for that price. You can also be assured that if a manufacturer establishes a minimum selling price, we will no longer offer their products. It is un-American and defeats the spirit of free enterprise.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Welcome Back Lt. Colonel Dan West

Being a Vietnam Veteran myself, I understand the hardships one faces in a war zone. Being away from family and friends for such a long period is enough, but add enduring a hostile environment and continually watching your back and keeping your head down. Throw in the apathy of the American public toward our military and it becomes even harder.

Dan West is the Southeast Regional Manager for the Congoleum Corporation and a U.S. Army
Reserve Officer. He has just recently returned from a year and a half deployment in Afghanistan. It also hits close to home as my nephew, Army Sgt. Steve Hammontree, is finishing up his third tour in Iraq.

Dan West and Pete Dumenil both manage my relationship with Congoleum and are reponsible for growing my business with Congoleum. Especially the Congoleum DuraCeramic Tile line and the DuraStone Tile line.

Welcome home Dan.

Monday, May 19, 2008

We Ship AnyWhere - Even Mercerville, NJ

What a coincidence! Just back to work after my Congoleum visit, I decide to walk thru our shipping department. I do this almost daily to make sure we are protecting our shipments to minimize possible freight damage. I don't know of any company that takes the time or spends the money we do for shipment protection in our industry.

It was a busy shipping day. There were lots of pallets of Quick-Step Laminate, Mohawk Laminate, Mohawk Hardwood, Bruce Hardwood, Tarkett Laminate, Nafco Vinyl tile, several pallets of Congoleum DuraCeramic tile, several rolls of Beaulieu carpet for Pakistan, and lots of Shaw Carpet being shipped to residential customers.

While walking thru the pallets I noticed one particular shipping address on a pallet of Congoleum DuraCeramic. It was shipping to Mercerville, NJ. That is where Congoleum is located. Now Mercerville is not that big, so I wondered if this person worked at Congoleum. After investigation, I decided not, because the customers email address indicated the New Jersey Dental Health Association and we were just shipping to a residence in Mercerville. So in fact it was just a coincidence, Strange but true. In fact we ship a lot of other products to New Jersey.

We are thankful for all of our customers. No matter where we ship.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

New Jersey Trip To Congoleum Factory

I just returned from touring Congoleum's tile factory in New Jersey where DuraCeramic is made. Unfortunately I left my camera back here in Georgia so I cannot share pictures. The tour was quite interesting to see the overall quality control of the product. From the time the limestone composite is placed in the hopper until it goes to distribution warehouse for shipment is about 10 days. I was impressed with the amount of attention given through the various stages of the manufacturing process
to insure the precise outcome of each production run. I can honestly say that I take a great deal of pride and comfort knowing that with each order we sell, our customer is getting the best product for their money.

That evening I was treated to a fantastic dinner at The Ferry House. Great food, great company. Before and after dinner I was given a driving tour of Princeton, New Jersey and I must say (even being from Georgia)that Princeton University is one of the most beautiful campuses I have ever seen. So rich in architecture and tradition.I lived on the Jersey coast for three years and I can honestly say, I have never seen such a gorgeous community.

The next day was a meeting at Congoleum's Corporate Headquarters in Mercerville, New Jersey. I met with their national sales and marketing team to share ideas on my particular efforts on selling and marketing Congoleum products. The meeting was very enlightening and I feel it will help us to continue to be strong in the sales Congoleum flooring. By noon we were on our way to the Philadelphia airport where our flight was delayed about two hours and then on to Atlanta and my drive to Dalton, GA. Welcome home. It's always good to be home.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Alloc added to Our Product Line

In response to many of our customer's request for a commercial laminate flooring at a reasonable price, American Carpet Wholesalers responded by adding the Alloc line of beautiful laminate floors. While Alloc Commercial Laminate is designed for commercial use, Alloc Original and Alloc Domestic are warranted for light commercial use

With Alloc Laminate's exclusive and patented mechanical locking system you are assured of close fitting seams and the joints will remain secure.
With superior joint integrity, stain, fade,wear, and water resistance Alloc laminate floors will be a popular choice for our commercial and residential builders. We are extremely excited about Alloc's product line.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Congoleum Duraceramic

What a GREAT product!
Congoleum has a winner here. Looks exactly like ceramic but is more durable and is warmer to foot traffic. It is easy to install. You can install with or without grout. We have literally sold millions of dollars of this product at American Carpet Wholesalers almost complaint free. Congoleum Duraceramic is the name to remember when considering tile for your floor.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Tarkett Residential Raising Prices April 1

Press Release From Tarkett:

Farnham, Quebec, Canada, February 22, 2008--

Tarkett Residential said it will increase prices for its residential resilient products 5-7-percent, effective with shipments on April 1.“Due to ongoing increases in raw materials, energy and freight costs, we found it necessary to adjust our pricing,” said President Guillaume Laverdure.

Source: Floor Daily

Products affected at American Carpet Wholesalers is our Tarkett Laminate Flooring line and the Nafco Luxury Vinyl Tile brand.. Our prices for the laminate flooring line and the luxury vinyl tile line are already extremely competitive. Because our volume puchasing of the Tarkett Laminate and the Nafco Vinyl Tile, I do not foresee a major impact. We negotiate our pricing on these products in advance at American Carpet Wholesalers. I do not see a price increase to be passed on to our customers until maybe late June or early July of 2008.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

What is Bliss by Beaulieu™?

Bliss by Beaulieu™ is not just a new brand from Beaulieu of America. Owner of such brands as Hollytex Carpets, Hollytex Commercial Carpets, Coronet Carpets, Coronet Commercial Carpets, Beaulieu Carpets, Beaulieu Commercial Carpets and several other lines. It is also a new way of marketing these unique carpets to the consumer. It is an attitude starting at the employee level. It is about bringing the employer, supplier, and consumer together on a personal business level.

The Bliss by Beaulieu™ line will consist of several collections Healthy Home™ , Natural Comfort™, and Ultimate Home™. Once rolled out, these collections will offer innovative carpet solutions for an individual consumer's lifestyle.

Beaulieu is already one of our favorite suppliers and once the new line is available, we will begin to promote it. I expect you will begin to see the products on our site beginning late May or early June. Once we start adding the products I will add another post.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Suffaces 2008 Floor Show and Convention

I just returned from Surfaces 2008 (Floor covering dealers and manufacturers annual convention). Because of the state of the economy and housing market, it was not nearly as crowded as in previous years. But all in all, I have to say that it was one of the better shows I have attended. Lots of new products, updating of some older dependable ones and an exciting new brand.

It was not possible to see every new entry. Previously I had made appointments with some of my major suppliers to see their new wares and to take advantage of some market specials. Mannington Mills was quite hospitable. There were some new additons to their Mannington Adura Tile and Plank line and a great market special. I bought a truckload. Mannington Laminate Floors and Mannington Hardwood Floors had some beautiful new additions. Mannington and the R A Siegel Company (my distributor for Mannington) gave me $100 in chips for my visit which I promptly turned into $300 while walking back through The Venetian Hotel casino.

But the most exciting part of the show for me was the introduction of "Bliss". A new carpet brand by Beaulieu USA (one of my major partners). I will give you more info on Bliss in my next post.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Southeastern Freight Lines Honors ACWG

SEFL named American Carpet Wholesalers of GA, Inc as one of their top 25 accounts. Considering that we are in Dalton, Ga along with the big names such as Shaw Industries, Mohawk Industries, Beaulieu of America, and about 100 other carpet manufacturers, this is a huge honor. Just think, 6 years ago it was very hard for us to get supplier recognition. My staff and I realize as long as we continue to provide products at a fair price and great customer service we will continue to grow and set sales records. All I can say to my crew is "You've come along way, baby". Thanks to all.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Floor Muffler Laminate Underlay

We have added Floor Muffler brand laminate underlay to our stocking inventory. Our customers have been asking for it for months. It has remarkable noise reduction characteristics and produces a sound almost identical to that of walking on real wood floors. We have not had anything but positive feedback for the product. Laminate flooring never sounded so good.
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