Furniture Industry Finance Articles
Furniture World Magazine
Thoughts about what retailers can expect as we transition to a less favorable credit environment.
Furniture World Magazine
Best retail practices using consumer financing options to increase close rates and average sale through 2022.
Published 2004 - 2023
A close-up look at the various types, features & advantages of consumer financing plans.
How Kloss Furniture used a grocery store conversion to achieve lower
overhead, great parking and location.
Downturns can be times of opportunity, and it's best to prepare for uncertain economic times.
Only about one in thirty independent furniture store owners
produce an annual budget and know how to use it.
Field-proven ways to maximize your realized gross margin.
Does your total Gross Margin after deducting Cost of Goods Sold give you a full performance picture?
Knowing your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and the threats facing your business allows you to focus.
Here's how one retailer used Expanded GMROI, a team approach, to grow GMROI 16% from 2015-2016.
Which opportunities should you invest in to get the best return? How do you know if costs will be covered?
As Macy’s learned the expensive way, contracting out the work to a third party does not insulate you from liability.
It’s a fact that the FP&A process increases the odds of retail success, producing better profits and cash flow than if you ignored FP&A. Here’s how it works.
Here are seven indicators you can use to know your business better, plus how you can use this information to surpass your unfocused competitors.
Business ups and downs you may consider normal, can add up to make the difference between huge profits or crushing losses.
A retailer’s perspective on using an outside company to do a GOB, inventory reduction, cash raising sale or other high impact promotion.
Today the news is full of stories about online threats directed against countries and large businesses. Although high level hackers may not be targeting your store specifically, you are still at risk of loss from a number of internal and external exposures.
Willingness to use GMROI as a tool is one factor that separates best performing stores from their peers.
By using the break-even sales equation your business can see in advance what volume
will be required to produce your desired profit. You will be able to create a meaningful strategy and plan better for the upcoming year.
David McMahon outlines the advantages of putting in place a strategic growth plan for the new year. For your business, strategic growth planning is the GPS for your retail future. It helps your business stay on course.
They are rightly named “Profit Parasites”. Like thieves in the night their insatiable appetites silently steal our working capital. Furthermore, they often evade the focus of our time and attention until they have done irreparable damage.
Prudent furniture retailers in large and small operations purchase Time Element coverage to provide protection for loss due to reduced sales/income and to restore a business to its condition prior to a catastrophic loss. This article by Stephen J. Wisocky explains how to purchase this type of insurance wisely.
Ten areas to consider when seeking to apply focused management and balanced performance.
David McMahon presents proven strategies that can produce 50 to 60 percent gross margins even in highly competitive markets.
An in-depth look at how to analyze one of your three critical financial statements: your statement of cash flow.
An in-depth look at how to analyze one of your three critical financial statements: the Balance Sheet.
An in-depth look at how to analyze one of your three critical financial statements: the Profit and Loss.
Probably the most destructive outcome of micro-management is that it stifles individual initiatives and innovation and fosters mediocrity. Micro-Monitoring has none of these drawbacks and helps keep furniture retailers on track toward meeting their goals.
The the name of the “game” has changed from “bulk buying and storage” to “flow and turns”. Retail operations that invest in warehouse assets with this new philosophy in mind can take advantage of changes in technology and inventory management.
Some of the built-in marketing features that most revolving credit programs offer provide a low cost way for you to remarket and communicate to your captive credit
Offering retail financing can be a wonderful closing tool and it is still one of the cheapest and most effective ways to advertise. Knowing where to look and what to look for are critical components in building a successful program for your customers.
The factors most retailers focus on in making strategic decisions are merchandise based. The fallacy in this approach is that merchandise does not sell or buy itself. People sell merchandise and people buy it. John Egger explains how Performance Indicator Numbers (PIN) can help you to respond appropriately to changing market conditions.
One of the most difficult issues now facing family-owned home furnishings businesses is succession. The challenge facing these companies is how to turn the business over to the next generation with a minimum of family stress and maximum financial security for everyone involved.
The private annuity can be an effective way to transfer appreciated property in exchange for lifetime payments to the older generation.
Although the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 contains the most dramatic tax reductions in 16 years, there are significant tax traps for the uninitiated. This article summarizes the benefits and exposes some of the traps.
It has been said that a banker is someone who lends you an umbrella when the sun is shining, and takes it away when it starts to rain. If that's true, then let's deal with the banker when the sun is shining.
Retailers may feel that price cutting is their best response to competition, but there is another way. John Egger discusses eight practices your store can adopt to help you to avoid falling into the low price, low margin, low service trap.
When margins are squeezed, most stores reduce the level of customer service they provide. Price cutting is, therefore, a leading cause of bad experiences consumers have in furniture stores. There is an alternative to destructive price competition that can boost margins, customer satisfaction and bottom line results.
Bottom-up goal development, setting personal goals and developing goals for new hires are covered in this important article by Ted Shepherd. Step-by-step calculations make this a valuable reference article.
The second article in this series takes a detailed look at close ratio and average sale. Joe Capillo explains how you can use these two measures as part of a system to promote continuous sales improvement.
Sales metrics, those calculations we use to measure our effectiveness in dealing with customers, are the most misunderstood and underused measurements in retail furniture stores.
This article by John Egger (Winning The Numbers Game) will look at the reasons why it is important to know the distribution of UPs, the spread in closing ratios and the spread in average sale among salespeople.
One of the most difficult management issues for small business owners and managers is the principle of accountability for performance. In most stores this one issue is the root cause of lower than possible performance in all business areas. The process must start by linking bottom line financial numbers with individual job performance.
Ask a sales associate how much profit an average furniture store makes. Most will guess in the neighborhood of fifty percent. Larry Mullins explains why this impression, that is also shared by your customers, can sabotage your sales and marketing efforts.
40% of college graduates start in jobs they're satisfied with at $25,000 to $35,000, and 10% more start at twice that. Most can avoid working weekends and holidays. Many can expect to advance in their professions while drawing a predictably increasing salary. Given the fact that successful retail salespeople need to have many talents and ccomplishments, how can furniture stores expect to attract the people who can do the best possible job?
How many sales dollars do you loose every time your least effective salesperson is UP versus your highest earner? Joe Capillo of Shepherd Management Group explains how you can use a performance index to measure sales performance, motivate salespeople and improve sales per UP.
This article reviews several common compensation plans. Although each seems straightforward, a more careful review finds that some plans 'de-motivate' salespeople, overcompensate others and even serve to encourage poor customer service.
How do you know that your sales manager is doing a good job? If he or she is, how do you know that you're compensating him or her adequately? Ted Shepherd looks at why many compensation plans based on total sales volume end up rewarding sales managers improperly... causing bad feelings on the part of both owners and sales managers.
This four part series continues with a discussion of additional sales metrics and begins to outline a system for using metrics to improve sales team performance over time.
The average store netted 4% pretax to sales last year. Most think they made only 4 cents out of every sales dollar… that's a dangerous misconception.. Larry Stark provides the financial management tools to help uncover the truth about the relationship between fixed/ variable expenses and profits.
The benefits of consumer finance options are considered along with how to market and manage each to help you to drive sales while increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty.
This series continues with a discussion of the kinds of programs and relationships retailers can expect to develop with finance companies. Important issues such as customer contact protocol, customer control, and program customization are discussed.
This series continues with a
discussion of boosting sales by managing your primary, secondary and in-house credit offerings.
A two-part series that looks at tools and techniques you can use to measure and improve the health of your inventory over time.
Experienced panel of top independent retailers to discuss ways to buy more effectively, and sell more gift and home accessory items.
This article is the first in a two-part series exploring the physiology of sleep, the evolution of bedding products, value promises and how to accurately convey these messages to consumers at the point of sale.
Part 2: Old school ways to increase this critical measure are just not enough anymore!
Organizer of imm cologne, The International Furnishing show announced that Wolfgang Kranz (49) has resigned from his position as Executive Vice President of Koelnmesse.
If you’ve considered the highly profitable finance end of the business and need to know how to buy contracts for in-house credit, try these simple rules.
Track this inventory metric to understand your customer’s buying patterns, establish a more relevant product mix, satisfy more people and sell more.
Most families in the retail furniture business just don’t talk about money. Money entices us with opportunities. Money torments us with uncertainty, and leads us to decisions we normally would not make. If you’re not careful, money and possessions will become the downfall of your family and your business.
This article will demonstrate how to calculate your break-even point of sales. It also provides real world examples of ways smart retailers can reduce their break-even points and level of risk.
Private label credit card programs can be custom-designed to fit the needs of large and small furniture retailers alike.
Flexible Budgeting lets you ‘Flex’ your top line and observe the resulting operational effects on your P&L and operating income.
Don’t get “tackled” by the IRS when handing off your business to the next generation.