If you’re looking for a franchise that isn’t expensive to set up, requires minimal ongoing fees, and attracts long term tenure, then a Solomons Flooring or Carpet Call store fits the bill.
Our well-established retail chains have an impressive average franchisee tenure of 12 years.
Jack McClane, National Franchise Manager, says the franchise agreement favours long term owners: it’s a five-year agreement with two options to renew.
“After two renewal terms, some committed franchisees then sign up for another new agreement!” he reveals.
A handful of passionate business owners who did just that have recently retired after an impressive three decades with the brand.
It’s clear the business is too good to leave!
Three retail store options
Floor Stores welcomed 16 new franchisees into both brands since the pandemic. The new franchise recruits have all picked a store format that suits their circumstances.
“Prospective franchisees have different investment amounts available, so our brand can cater to different options,” explains Jack.
Both brands offer a premium model, a standard retail outlet and a modular store to add to an existing like-minded business.
The top-of-the-range premium store of at least 250m2 floor space (possibly with an onsite warehouse) typically sits in a homemaker centre. While the upfront investment of approximately $225,000 to $250,000, and rental costs, are higher than the standard store, the business can leverage the substantial benefits of a destination location.
Standard retail outlet
A standard Carpet Call or Solomons Flooring store might locate in a secondary location such as a main road or in a shopping strip. The showroom has a maximum footprint of up to 150m2, and the initial investment is approximately $160,000 to $175,000 for a turnkey operation.
“Rents are a bit cheaper, the fit-out costs are cheaper, there is less to spend on signage, and the rental bond is significantly reduced,” says Jack.
Adding a modular option is a brilliant way for an existing business, a tile retailer like National Tiles or even for a local independent tile store, for instance, to become a flooring superstore.
“Both businesses complement each other,” says Jack. “If you’re doing a total home renovation, the consumer can just go to one store.”
The modular option is an ideal solution for regional areas, he points out.
“In smaller country towns there is probably an entrepreneur with several different businesses who could leverage the complementary services to their advantage.”
A Solomons Flooring or Carpet Call modular store could be a smart addition for a carpet cleaning firm, a window furnishings retailer, a solar panel installation business, a bathroom or paint store.
“If there’s a way to complement businesses, we’ll do it,” says Jack.
Our brands are a low-cost retail investment
“The benefit with our modular option is that costs are extremely low. The other business is already paying the rent, wages and utilities, so operating costs are reduced. Another advantage is the capacity to cross train an existing team,” he says.
Modular stores already account for about 15 per cent of the Floor Stores retail outlets, and there is plenty of opportunity for keen business owners to take up this supplementary option.
Whatever choice best suits a franchisee, Jack points out both brands offer cost-effective retailing options at every level, with minimal set-up costs.
“This is a cashflow positive business as well, so the customer pays for their purchase usually before you are invoiced by the supplier,” he explains.
“Our model only deals with a set number of suppliers; they are the best at what they do, and their support for our franchisees is fantastic. They deliver quality products.’
Product exclusivity is a great advantage for customers, and therefore, franchisees.
“We import flooring that is exclusive to us. We want franchisees to have the biggest and best range that not every, Tom, Dick and Harry also carry. This is a significant advantage being part of our group,” says Jack. “But don’t worry, we also have options available with local suppliers and manufacturers to complement the overall ranges available.”
Floor Stores’ unique approach to royalties also adds to the brand’s appeal as a franchise business.
“Once a store has contributed $60,000 in royalties, that’s it for life, there are no more fees to pay the franchisor,” says Jack.
Some franchisees can achieve this target within two years while others may take longer.
“There’s no set percentage marketing fee, we pay for our national marketing campaigns out of our own margin,” says Jack. “But franchisees should expect to spend on their own local marketing promotions,” he adds.
Every six months the marketing team plans a calendar for local marketing. The brand strategy includes a mix of Google AdWords, local sponsorship, and airing TV commercials locally is encouraged for the regional franchisees.
“Our brands are on TV on FTA and/or Foxtel for most months of the year,” he says.
Both brands’ franchisees love the business
Brilliant feedback from franchisees confirms the well-established brand’s superior business offer.
“The feedback from franchisees is that our supportive approach still gives them freedom to run their own businesses their way.
Jack sums up the clear benefits of joining and staying with one of our iconic flooring brands.
“Once you join us you are generally here to stay for a long time,” he says. “Franchisees trust the model, and they trust us as a franchisor. So long as you are operating the business correctly, and delivering first class customer service, there is no reason you can’t be successful as a Solomons Flooring or Carpet Call franchisee.”