Our Furniture Niche

This is a blog to pass on ideas or important information that may assist the specialized furniture carrier in their business.

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Patrick Cory is no stranger to going the last mile. In fact, he’s at the helm of a company that goes the last mile thousands of times a year, delivering large pieces of furniture, electronics and appliances that are too big and too heavy for the UPS or FedEx delivery systems.

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I just finished reading Jerry Epperson’s February 8, 2016 article in Furniture/Today, “Why I’m sticking with real brick-and-mortar stores.”  What a marvelous delineation between the brick-and-mortar and the Internet furniture buying experience.  It was clear, passionate, and complete.  As Jerry shared his story he took a jab at Amazon Prime’s free delivery.  Since he mentioned transportation, I would like to elaborate on the furniture industry’s very own private fleet and the unique services provided by specialized furniture carriers.

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On Wednesday, October 28, I had the opportunity to work a Job Fair at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Cooke Safety Director Danny Sidden, Styline Logistics Safety & Recruiting Official Lacy Shipwash, NWFX Safety & Recruiting Official Tommy Pritchard, and Tommy’s wife, Susan Pritchard, were also in attendance. All worked very hard to make this beneficial for the military personnel.

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If today's economy has taught us anything, it's that people will pay a premium for delivery of a product that they want. The perfect example illustrating this ever-growing phenomenon is the Internet-based company Amazon. A winning price/value formula is the basis of its ongoing success, and people are happy to pay a premium price for an item valued at $14.99 just to have it delivered the next day. We all know that a product needs to offer value through price and/or...
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Many delivery companies talk about performing white-glove deliveries. Such service in reality involves more than simply wearing white gloves when bringing furniture into the home. A true white-glove delivery is about the consumer feeling that the level of service she is receiving exceeds her expectations. It is about her feeling pleased that the delivery professionals took the time to explain the delivery process and about her feeling safe in her home. It's about her not feeling rushed for the delivery to...
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Social Media is a powerful tool that can greatly benefit business. It brings people from different geographical locations together at a single point and allows them to express their views. In all of its simplicity, it is global reaching with unlimited access and flexibility. And the really great thing – there is no cost. Communication can be done in a flash, regardless of location, thus inspiring the sharing of ideas while connecting and establishing relationships. It is due to this sense...
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It should come as no surprise that our businesses are becoming more complicated to run.  At our summer conference in July, Hank Seaton of Seaton & Husk explained many of the upcoming changes due to CSA and the passage of MAP-21 http://www.fta.dot.gov/map21/.

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As a retailer or manufacturer you spend a lot of time and money crafting your brand and training your people in an effort to perfect that “first impression.”  Then along comes the internet and the point of first contact shifts and you are no longer in control.  You want the customer to see the product in a well accessorized showroom attended by well dressed and well trained salespeople.  The internet customer’s first contact is a small picture viewed on anything from a...
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In an earlier blog I spoke about the customer survey we conducted late last year (2011).  I’d like to highlight a few comments from our retail customers.   It should go without saying that the white-glove carrier is critical to the “Business to Customer” transaction.   As one respondent put it, “The end result in the customer’s home is very important because it reflects back on us as a retailer.”  In the virtual world of online sales everyone’s reputation depends on first impressions...
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Last year we decided to ask our customers what made specialized furniture carriers "special."  We did not want to influence the survey so we asked North Carolina State University for help.  Our friends at the Furniture Center asked the NCSU Psychology department for assistance in ways to ask questions which do not lead the respondent to a predisposed answer.  Those surveyed included retailers and furniture shippers.  The first thing which caught my eye was that 53% of the respondents did not outsource their...
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