Todayâ€™s kitchen and bath showrooms may be smaller than in years past, but despite the limited space, they are working harder than ever to showcase maximum product, displays and technology.
Now, as the economy is finally gaining some traction in 2012, itâ€™s appropriate to take stock of the kitchen and bath industry. Clearly, the devastating effects of the 2008-2009 Great Recession have shattered any illusions that our industry would be eternally robust.
Finding out the root causes of industry weaknesses is a little like peeling back an onion. Each explanation gives rise to further questions at a deeper level.
In a time when google is the ultimate information resource, â€œfriendsâ€ are a commodity found on Facebook and everything from phones to refrigerators are â€œsmart,â€ itâ€™s easy to assume the whole word has gone to the technophiles. And, indeed, technology continues to have a growing impact on everything from the way information is accessed and how products are ordered to how the industry markets kitchens and baths to consumers.
Yet most kitchen and bath dealers prefer to take a middle ground approach that blends elements of high-tech communication with the human touch â€“ balancing magazines and newspaper with Web sites and online videos, trade shows and live conferences with Webinars and online interactive training courses, e-Newsletters with good old fashioned word of mouth.