Professional salespeople ensure that their clients’ expectations are accurately set with good sampling. The alternative… the client will set their own often unrealistic expectations. Result… client dissatisfaction, holdbacks, restocking fees and wasted time (literally months with today’s supply chain challenges) stuck getting the project back on track. Wood flooring products, in particular, can have a wide range of color across the spectrum from ‘clear’ (clean) grades to ‘character’ (strong colour variation). Contrasting dark / light planks sometimes don’t appear on a typical 18” x 18” factory supplied sample board. Show the full range as much as is reasonably possible and have the client sign off on the approved sample (signing makes people pay attention). Photograph the sample for future reference (the true color may not represent well in a photo but the grade and natural characteristics such as knots and mineral streaks will). For larger projects, open a full pack of material. For products replicating a wood look such as LVP, SPC or laminate, know the number of boards for a full pattern repeat. Deal head on with the tough questions and stand out from those who sample ineffectively, oversell and under deliver.
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