NAHFA’s new DataLink service standardizes product data

Will provide retailers content for online, in-store use

Clint Engel — Furniture Today, January 15, 2015See original article on furnituretoday.com

ROSEVILLE, Calif. — The North American Home Furnishings Assn. is launching a service that it said will allow home furnishings retailers to access supplier product data in an easy, standardized format they need to compete with e-commerce giants.

NAHFA DataLink, developed for the retailer association by RM Innovation, enables seamless streaming of manufacturers’ product data to retailers, providing rich, relevant digital content they can use on their websites, e-catalogs, point-of-sale systems, in-store digital signage and more, officials said.

Product suppliers in any home furnishing category can use the system to have their product catalogs digitally standardized for free, regardless of the size or format of existing files. NAHFA said the DataLink already is loaded with hundreds of thousands of home furnishings SKUs including area rugs, accessories and several furniture catalogs.

Retailers will be able to stream their suppliers’ product data for “a nominal monthly fee based upon the amount of product SKUs needed,” the association said. The program is available to all retailers, but NAHFA members will receive a discount.

“Furniture retailers have forever been frustrated trying to access manufacturers’ data — photos, pricing, measurements and style — in a standardized format,” NAHFA said in a release. “That meant online home furnishings shoppers frequently did their research and shopping with national e-commerce giants. With NAHFA DataLink, local retailers can now supply the same photos and information shoppers are looking for, to buy locally.”

NAHFA CEO Sharron Bradley called the service “a game-changer for home furnishings retailers,” adding, “This will help level the playing field between brick-and-mortar retailers and e-commerce giants.”

NAHFA DataLink will automatically update supplier catalog data, eliminating discontinued products and adding introductions as they become available. It’s easy to use and frees retailers “to continue building their brick-and-mortar stores,” Bradley said.

At the Las Vegas Market, the association’s leaders plan to meet with suppliers to explain the service and encourage their participation. NAHFA said the system is secure for product suppliers, keeping vendors and their representatives in control of their content and how much of it individual retailers have access to.

Retailers, meanwhile, also can control how much of the data they choose to stream and use.

Retailers interested in learning about NAHFA DataLink can speak to NAHFA representatives during market at the Retail Resource Center, World Market Center B-1050, or call (800) 422-3778.

“We’re always looking for innovative ways to support NAHFA members and the industry,” Bradley said. “That’s why we’re so excited about NAHFA DataLink.”

For more in-depth coverage of the new program, see Furniture/Today’s Las Vegas Market opening day issue.

NAHFA CEO Nominated for WithIt WOW Award

The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) announced that CEO Sharron Bradley has been nominated for WithIt’s WOW Award in the Mentoring category along with Patrick Cory, Cory Home Delivery and Lorri Kelley, Palliser.

The Mentoring Award, which is given to an executive or organization that has fostered advocacy, development or promotion of women in their company, is one of several awards WithIt will bestow during its annual WOW awards dinner and ceremony, Sunday, January 18, 2015 opening night of the Las Vegas Winter Market.

NAHFA is a nonprofit association providing industry leadership, advocacy, education, resources, and networking opportunities to owners and managers of home furnishings companies and the industry at large. Sharron has served the Association for more than 13 years.

NAHFA CEO, Sharron Bradley

NAHFA CEO, Sharron Bradley

Prior to leading NAHFA Sharron was vice president of a commercial furniture dealership and held jobs in sales and marketing as well as design and operations. She has a BS degree in Business Administration and a MS in Human Resource Management and Organizational Development. She serves on several nonprofit boards and committees in the areas of animal welfare, education and community development. In these roles she has worked on issues regarding board and staff development and organizational effectiveness and growth initiatives.

“It is quite an honor to be nominated for the Mentoring Award along with Patrick and Lorri,” Bradley said. “As an association, mentoring is one of our top priorities, whether it’s personally supporting or guiding people or enabling our members to do so. Mentoring is a critical part of our industry.”

WithIt will honor Carolyn Kinder with its Legacy Award, and will announce the winners of the Mentoring, Education, Leadership and Future Leader awards as well. The annual celebration recognize business leaders nominated by their peers who have contributed to the success of the home furnishings industry and have demonstrated significant impact on their companies, the industry, or both. WithIt (Women’s Leadership Development Network) has presented the honors since 1999.

For more information about the awards celebration or to purchase tickets, visit withit.org.

About the North American Home Furnishings Association:
The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) was founded in 2013 with the merger of the three largest home furnishings retailer associations in the U.S. The NAHFA is the nation’s largest organization devoted specifically to the needs and interests of home furnishings retailers, with more than 1,800 members representing more than 7,000 storefronts across all 50 states and several foreign countries. Association offices in the East, West, and Central United States provide its members with programs, resources, services, and a unified voice in government relations by partnering with home furnishings industry suppliers, vendors, affiliates, and other organizations. For more information on the NAHFA visit www.nahfa.org.

NAHFA Partners with PROFITsystems to Bring Back the Retail Performance Report

The NAHFA and PROFITsystems’ consultants will re-launch the benchmarking tool for the home furnishings industry during the 2015 Home Furnishings Networking Conference.

COLORADO SPRINGS, CO – December 8, 2014- The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) announced today that the organization will be working with PROFITsystems’ consultants Wayne McMahon and David McMahon to re-launch the popular annual Retail Performance Report. The upcoming edition of the report will be compiled from 2014 data and released at the 2015 NAHFA Home Furnishings Networking Conference, May 17-19 in Orlando.

Last compiled seven years ago, the Retail Performance Report has been regarded as the “bible of benchmarking” for the home furnishings industry. Performance Data is compiled on an annual basis from retailers across North America. The result is a report that businesses can use to compare themselves against their peers in the industry.

“We are extremely excited to be working with PROFITsystems experts Wayne McMahon and David McMahon to bring back the Retail Performance Report. It will be great to once again provide this invaluable benchmarking tool to our members and to the industry,” said Kaprice Crawford, NAHFA Membership Director.

PROFITsystems’ Wayne McMahon, CPA, CMA and David McMahon, CMA, EA are long time industry consultants and performance group directors. They are certified accountants and provide financial and operational improvement advice to home furnishings retailers.

“We have found through our performance groups and consulting clients that those retailers who watch their key performance indicators and compare themselves against their peers are the most successful. They’re in touch with their business,” said David McMahon of PROFITsystems.

Leveraging the latest professional web survey technology, the NAHFA and PROFITsystems aim to compile data that can help determine industry averages and help home furnishings retailers understand how they measure up against their peers and competition. In addition, both organizations will offer retailers the opportunity to have their data confidentially compared against the industry norm and receive individual feedback and recommendations.

Education on the value of benchmarking and invitations to participate in the new 2015 NAHFA Retail Performance Report will be made available in January.

About the NAHFA
The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) was founded in 2013 with the merger of the three largest home furnishings retailer associations in the U.S. The NAHFA is North America’s largest organization devoted specifically to the needs and interests of home furnishings retailers, with more than 1,800 members representing more than 7,000 storefronts across all 50 states and several countries. Association offices in the East, West, and Central United States provide members with programs, resources, services, and a unified voice in government relations by partnering with home furnishings industry suppliers, vendors, affiliates, and other organizations.

About PROFITsystems
PROFITsystems is a complete solution for the modern home goods retailer. Key components of their solutions for retailers include enterprise software, consulting, performance groups, advanced education, group-buying freight programs, eCommerce and business intelligence. PROFITsystems features real-time inventory management, customer relations management, point-of-sale, and accounting systems. For additional information on PROFITsystems, please visit their website at: www.profitsystems.com.

Media Contact:
Guadalupe Pagalday
Phone: 719 433 7036
guadalupe.pagalday@accellos.com

NAHFA Adds Three Membership Programs

Programs Help Retailers Increase Sales and Customer Satisfaction

Roseville, CA – November 18, 2014 - The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) announced today its added three new programs to help its members grow their businesses. These programs include online marketing, a cloud-based phone system and secondary finance.

Furniche.com is a consumer website geared toward educating consumers throughout the home furnishings purchasing process; it offers members a way to expand their online presence. NAHFA members receive a 25-45% discount on the service, based on number of store locations. The program features location services, ad placements, content-driven marketing, SEO support, performance analytics and social media integration.

Members looking for a new phone system can take advantage of the program with Crexendo, a cloud platform that scales with the business. The program offers low monthly fees, free upgrades, free domestic long distance calls to the U.S. and Canada, plug-and-go capabilities and no hardware/software installation. NAHFA members receive a discount on this program and could save up to 50% on their upgraded phone system.

Access to secondary and alternative finance programs is important in today’s economy. NAHFA now has a program with LendPro by which members can obtain more approvals for consumers applying for in-store financing. Multi-tier lending options, maximized approvals and a streamlined application process are just a few tangible benefits to this program. “One of our missions is to help our members improve and grow their business,” said NAHFA’s CEO Sharron Bradley. “These new programs provide tools for them to operate more efficiently, reach more consumers and facilitate financing for customers. We’re happy to be working with these outstanding companies.”

About the North American Home Furnishings Association:
The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) was founded in 2013 with the merger of the three largest home furnishings retailer associations in the U.S. The NAHFA is the nation’s largest organization devoted specifically to the needs and interests of home furnishings retailers, with more than 1,800 members representing more than 7,000 storefronts across all 50 states and several foreign countries. Association offices in the East, West, and Central United States provide its members with programs, resources, services, and a unified voice in government relations by partnering with home furnishings industry suppliers, vendors, affiliates, and other organizations. For more information on the NAHFA visit www.nahfa.org.

NAHFA Announces Call for 2015 Retailer of the Year Nominations

Roseville, CA, Wednesday, October 15, 2014— The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) is accepting nominations for its 2015 Retailer of the Year award. Nominations are due by December 19, 2014 and awards will be presented on May 17, 2015 at the annual Home Furnishings Conference in Orlando, FL.

“We wish we could award every single member of our Association—because let’s face it, being a retailer and staying in business is hard—but we’re looking to the industry to nominate truly exceptional members for recognition,” said Sharron Bradley, NAHFA’s CEO.

The Association is looking for NAHFA members who demonstrate exemplary service to the industry and to their communities and who provide an exceptional customer experience in their stores. Nominees will be considered in two categories—businesses with sales volume under $10 million and those with sales volume $10 million or above.

Any member of the home furnishings industry may nominate one or more NAHFA member for Retailer of the Year. Nominees will be contacted to ascertain eligibility and interest prior to the selection process. A representative from each section of the industry is included on the selection committee, to include NAHFA’s Board members; a sponsor manufacturer; an industry supplier; a former award recipient; a principal of the International Home Furnishings Representatives Association; and a member of the industry press.

About the North American Home Furnishings Association:

The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) was founded in 2013 with the merger of the three largest home furnishings retailer associations in the U.S. The NAHFA is the nation’s largest organization devoted specifically to the needs and interests of home furnishings retailers, with more than 1,800 members representing more than 7,000 storefronts across all 50 states and several foreign countries. Association offices in the East, West, and Central United States provide its members with programs, resources, services, and a unified voice in government relations by partnering with home furnishings industry suppliers, vendors, affiliates, and other organizations. For more information on the NAHFA visit nahfa.org.

NAHFA’s Next Gen NOW Market Events

Power lunch, endorsed education and semi-annual bash

Roseville, CA, October 10, 2014 — The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) is hosting a Lunch with Leaders event, Sunday, October 19, at the High Point Market for Next Gen NOW members and industry leaders and influencers.

Next Gen NOW members will have the opportunity to share a one-on-one working lunch with seasoned professionals in select showrooms during which they’ll learn best practices, expand upon their knowledge of the industry and/or a specific segment of the industry, and make connections that will help them in their pursuit of progressing the home furnishings trade. Industry leaders participating in the lunch include Lee Goodman, Jerome’s Furniture, Kim Shaver, Kim Darden Shaver Communications, and Kim Yost, Art Van Furniture.

“The Next Gen NOW Lunch and Learn session have been a huge success,” said Sharron Bradley, NAHFA’s CEO. “Our goal with this community is to help facilitate its members’ growth and involvement within the industry however we can, whether that be arranging lunches with well-respected leaders or providing an opportunity to network. ”

Next Gen NOW members can learn more at ngnow.org or by contacting Cindi Williams at (800) 422-3778 or cwilliams@nahfa.org.

Join Next Gen NOW members Sunday evening from 6:00—8:00 p.m. at the FurnitureDealer.net hangout at 311 S. Elm Street. There’s free parking, free WiFi, adult beverages and comfortable seating inside and out.

Members invite buyers to attend the following Next Gen NOW sponsored education during market as well.

NAHFA Retailer Resource Center, 1st Floor, Plaza Suites
Amazon Marketplace 101: Selling on Amazon
John Reisen, Sr. CMM – Lawn & Garden & Brent Avila, Sr. CMM – Home, Amazon
Sunday, October 19, 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.; Repeats Monday, October 20, 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Retail has evolved and eCommerce has grown in popularity among consumers with high growth expected to continue. Many shopping experiences begin online with significant influence on offline sales. New opportunities exist for small retailers to reach more customers through eCommerce avenues. Learn how Amazon reaches a broad audience of unique visitors and your potential customers. Find out the how Amazon can support your bottom line. This presentation will cover how retailers can take steps to begin selling on Amazon’s platform.

About the North American Home Furnishings Association:
The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) was founded in 2013 with the merger of the three largest home furnishings retailer associations in the U.S. The NAHFA is the nation’s largest organization devoted specifically to the needs and interests of home furnishings retailers, with more than 1,800 members representing more than 7,000 storefronts across all 50 states and several foreign countries. Association offices in the East, West, and Central United States provide its members with programs, resources, services, and a unified voice in government relations by partnering with home furnishings industry suppliers, vendors, affiliates, and other organizations. For more information on the NAHFA visit www.nahfa.org.

About Next Generation-NOW:
Next Generation-NOW is a community of young, passionate, vibrant home furnishings professionals that represents the future of the home furnishings industry. Working together, this community helps develop the next group of industry leaders through educational events, social networking, and peer guidance and gives a voice to the distinctive needs of future generations in the furniture industry. For more information, visit www.nextgenerationnow.net.

NAHFA Announces October 2014 High Point Seminars

October 10, 2014, Roseville, CA — The North American Home Furnishings Association has announced its seminar schedule for Oct. 18-23 High Point Furniture Market.

Free to market attendees, all seminars are held in the Retailer Resource Center on the first floor of Plaza Suites at 222 S. Main Street.

The NAHFA hosts seminars during Las Vegas and High Point Markets in dedicated Retailer Resource Centers, which are designed to give retailers access to information, vendors, workshops, and speakers that can help improve and grow their businesses. Sessions topics include everything from sales and sales management to social media, operations, promotions and technology.

“Our Retailer Resource Center is a great place for retailers to brush up on an issue they’ve been struggling with, gather information on products and services, and take a quick break in the café,” said NAHFA’s CEO, Sharron Bradley. “One of the Association’s goals is to provide retailers the tools they need to improve their businesses and our seminars and RRC are designed around that idea.”

The seminars are sponsored by Furniture Wizard. Seminars at Fall Market are offered Saturday, Oct. 18 through Tuesday, Oct. 21. A complete listing of the dates and times of NAHFA’s seminars is available here.

NAHFA’s High Point RRC Filled with Business Service Providers – October 2014

Roseville, CA, October 6, 2014 — The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) provides High Point buyers a one-stop marketplace filled with service providers offering money-saving tools to improve their businesses. The Retailer Resource Center (RRC), located on the first floor of Plaza Suites, hosts 30 vendors who offer products and services ranging from advertising and marketing, financial, consulting, and design, to technology, training, and warehouse distribution. The RRC is open Saturday, October 18 through Wednesday, October 22.

Companies exhibiting in the Retailer Resource Center:
indicates NAHFA Preferred Vendor

ACA – Advertising Concepts of America
Best Buy For Business
Bristlecone Financing
Clear Destination
Cory 1st Choice Home Delivery
Crexendo
CrossCheck
Custom Design Software
Diakon Logistics
Dispatch Track
Fisher Printing
FurnitureDealer.Net
Furniture Wizard
FurnitureCore / Impact Consulting
JRM Sales & Management
Knorr Marketing
Mail America
MicroD, Inc.
Moso Graphics
Myriad Software
NAHFA Warehouse Store
Profitability Consulting Group
PROFITsystems, a HighJump Product
Risk Assurance Partners, LLC
RM Innovations
Service Lamp Corporation
Spectrum Marketing
STORIS
Synchrony Financial
Tidewater Finance Company
Tropic Survival Advertising & Marketing
United Steel Storage, Inc.
VividWorks

Buyers are invited to start their day with a complimentary continental breakfast (Saturday-Wednesday, 8:00-9:30 a.m.) and refuel in the afternoons with hot dogs and snacks (Saturday-Tuesday, 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.). Stop by anytime to relax and refuel with gourmet lattes, mochas and cappuccinos.

NAHFA’s Membership Representatives will be on site October 18-22 in the RRC (located by the Retailer Lounge) to answer questions and provide information about becoming an NAHFA member or to help existing members get the most out of their membership.

About the North American Home Furnishings Association:
The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) was founded in 2013 with the merger of the three largest home furnishings retailer associations in the U.S. The NAHFA is the nation’s largest organization devoted specifically to the needs and interests of home furnishings retailers, with more than 1,800 members representing more than 7,000 storefronts across all 50 states and several foreign countries. Association offices in the East, West, and Central United States provide its members with programs, resources, services, and a unified voice in government relations by partnering with home furnishings industry suppliers, vendors, affiliates, and other organizations. For more information on the NAHFA visit www.nahfa.org.

NAHFA Hosts Seminar at Midwest Furniture Show

Roseville, CA, September 5, 2014 — The North American Home Furnishings Association will exhibit and sponsor a seminar at next week’s Midwest Furniture Show at the Schaumburg Convention Center, Schaumburg, Ill.

On Wednesday, 10-11:30 a.m., Ashley Furniture’s Geoff Weed will facilitate the seminar, “Eight Great Closings,” presented by Phillip Gutsell, president and owner of Gutsell & Associates. Gutsell consults with home furnishings retailers on marketing, advertising, motivational sales training and strategic planning. View more details here.

“We’re excited to participate and host Phil’s seminar at the Midwest Furniture Show,” said NAHFA’s executive vice president, Mary Frye. “Phil often draws a crowd to his seminars in our Retailer Resource Centers in High Point and Las Vegas and we’re sure attendees in Schaumburg will be just as pleased with his presentation.”

NAHFA attends, sponsors and hosts regional events such as this to gather local retailers for educational opportunities and networking. The NAHFA membership team will be visiting retailers in the Chicago area and be on site during the show, sharing Association resources and information.

NAHFA Congratulates Wogie Badcock for being Among Finalists for NRF Retail Award

Roseville, CA, August 7, 2014 — The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) congratulates Wogie Badcock, executive vice president of public affairs and chairman of the board for Badcock Furniture & More, Mulberry-FL for being among the Retail Champion finalists honored by the National Retail Federation (NRF) as part of its Retail Advocates Summit and fly in, July 30.

David French (left) and NRF congratulates (left to right) Ann Wingrove, Wogan Badcock III, Ruthena Fink, Art Potash and Teresa Miller (and of course our emcee (right) Dave Ratner)! Thank you for your dedication to retail advocacy.

David French (left) and NRF congratulates (left to right) Ann Wingrove, Wogan Badcock III, Ruthena Fink, Art Potash and Teresa Miller (and of course our emcee (right) Dave Ratner)
Source: National Retail Federation Flickr

“Wogie is not only a great advocate for the members of the NAHFA, but for retail as a whole,” said NAHFA CEO, Sharron Bradley. “He is a member of the NAHFA’s government relations action team and has worked for decades with previous associations to raise the voice of retailers in the states in which his company and dealers do business and in Washington, D.C. We applaud his nomination for Retail Champion. It is a well-deserved honor.”

The NRF celebrated the nominees for their grassroots advocacy and engagement on federal, state and local issues at the Retail Advocates Summit. Retailers met with congressional staff to discuss issues such as internet sales tax, patent litigation reform, data security and rules of overtime. They also heard from NRF speakers and enjoyed the Retail Champion gala. The NRF established the America’s Retail Champions program this year to honor retailers who make their mark on public policy debates and decisions. A total of 44 retailers ranging from mid-size store owners to online sellers were nominated for the national recognition based on their willingness to speak up on the retail industry’s priorities.

Badcock is known in the home furnishings industry for his personal advocacy efforts and he encourages staff across the 79 corporate stores and 228 dealer-owned stores in Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, George and Virginia to get involved as well. Badcock & More stores are either members or involved in the NAHFA and NRF as well as the retail associations and chambers in their states.

“We try to make it easy for our dealers to be involved in government affairs,” Badcock said. “That’s what my department deals with; we tell them when they need to take action and what they need to do. You want to be involved in the state issues as well as the federal issues. You find gray areas and try to make them black and white.”

About the North American Home Furnishings Association: 

The North American Home Furnishings Association (NAHFA) was founded in 2013 with the merger of the three largest home furnishings retailer associations in the U.S. The NAHFA is the nation’s largest organization devoted specifically to the needs and interests of home furnishings retailers, with more than 1,800 members representing more than 7,000 storefronts across all 50 states and several foreign countries. Association offices in the East, West, and Central United States provide its members with programs, resources, services, and a unified voice in government relations by partnering with home furnishings industry suppliers, vendors, affiliates, and other organizations. For more information on the NAHFA visit www.nahfa.org.