AN aggressive marketing campaign, competitive pricing and an increase in new builders’ accounts has driven up revenues in the midst of a tough retail environment at Carpet Call.
General manager John Bradshaw says the company ramped up its marketing during the tough times and invested in its online strategy.
“We’ve been doing what we always do in business, which is marketing aggressively, free-to-air and pay TV as we aim to increase our market share further - we’re operating in a tough retail environment, but our revenue figures have stayed strong,” says Bradshaw.
“We have an already established website that enables our customers to contact us more readily, compare products and provides another level of access to our brand and we’ve found this side of the business is continually growing.
“We’ve become more competitive in our pricing structure by sourcing better pricing from Australian and overseas manufacturers and passing that saving on to our customers. We also only deal directly with manufacturers not going through wholesalers, which makes us more competitive.”
Bradshaw says the company is split into three divisions – company retail stores, franchise stores mainly in regional areas and a commercial division which focuses on builders servicing the new home market
“New home approvals have decreased, but we have increased the number of builders we’re dealing with and increased our market share,” he says.
“We recently opened a new store in Riverlink Shopping Centre in Ipswich and have plans on opening additional stores in the Brisbane metropolitan area as we find suitable locations – we’re also growing our interstate presence as well.
“Our head office warehouse and distribution depot in Brisbane, which was built three years ago, was purpose-built with more than double the capacity of our previous warehouse and has enabled us to handle containers more efficiently and take advantage of imports with the strong dollar.”
Bradshaw says building has already commenced on a new warehouse in Melbourne, which will triple present capacity and allow a continued expansion of the business.
“We’ve also finalised a marketing campaign to attract new franchises for regional areas, which will be released over the next few weeks. This will be directed at small business owners already in the flooring market who want to add our products to their business and increase their product profile, turnover and profitability immediately, without needing to carry the stock,” he says.
The shopping habits of customers have changed in an environment that is also ever changing.
“What we’ve found is that customers like to have all of their options under one roof, they like dealing with our staff and if customers are comfortable buying carpet from us, they’ll also look at buying their timber flooring, rugs or other flooring products from us,” says Bradshaw.
“Rugs have grown substantially for us as carpet and timber flooring tends to be more of a considered purchase for customers. Rugs on the other hand can also be an impulse purchase and while customers are shopping for their flooring they can take advantage of the other products we have available.
“Although we’re working in a volatile economic environment, our focus is firmly on staying positive, not allowing our sales staff to worry about outside influences that are outside their control. We will continue to provide excellent value for money as we pass on the benefits of a high Australian dollar, due to our massive buying power, sourcing quality products and continuing to import directly.”
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