We look at what you should bear in mind when choosing somewhere to buy flooring, and why people in our survey chose to use certain retailers.
The costs of carpet, underlay and fitting can soon mount up, particularly if you opt for a quality material such as wool or are getting several rooms carpeted.
So if you’re forking out hundreds or even thousands of pounds for your flooring, it’s worth using a company that’ll deliver good results.
Ask friends and family who have carpet in their homes for recommendations – or any cautionary tales of stores that didn’t provide good customer service.
Read reviews for any retailers that you’re considering using. You can find out what hundreds of customers told us about their experiences of using John Lewis, Tapi and Carpetright.
Be objective when looking at reviews.
Do the comments sound genuine? If there are any negative comments, what are the reasons and has the retailer responded to try to resolve the issue?
Independent carpet shops
Our results showed it’s worth considering an independent retailer when buying carpet. Nearly two-thirds of the people we surveyed chose to use an independent flooring company rather than a high street store, and they topped our table with a customer score of 90%.
Customers gave independent stores a top five-star rating for carpet quality, delivery, fitting, customer service and value for money.
In a further survey* with people who had used an independent store, we asked why they chose them instead of high street stores.
More than eight in ten thought that the independents offered a more personal, tailored customer experience than big retailers could provide.
Convenience, quality of advice and a desire to invest in local businesses were also popular reasons.
Why choose an independent over a high street chain?
84% – personal and tailored customer experience
70% – convenient (eg near home)
63% – better quality of advice
62% – investing in local businesses
28% – better deals
20% – wider choice of carpets
13% – more unique types of carpet for sale
12% – it’s the ethical choice
*Based on an August 2019 survey of 682 people that bought a carpet from an independent carpet retailer in the last 10 years. Customers told us lots of positive stories about the independent stores they used. Below is a selection of their comments.
“I was able to discuss requirements in detail. Very attentive service. I felt like a valued customer.”
“They are a local family firm, and a lot of their business is by personal recommendation. This is reflected in the excellent customer service.”
“They did a good job at a price considerably less than the nationals for the same carpet.”
“They were very happy to send a second fitter, who did a better job, after we were unhappy with the original fitting.”
“I didn’t feel that big companies would give me the follow up service once fitted, as I would just be a receipt number, not a face that could pop into the shop.”
“The fitting wasn’t a straightforward job, but the fitter was unhurried and clearly intent on doing the job well rather than quickly.”
*August 2019 survey with 682 survey participants who said they had used an independent retailer to buy carpet in the last ten years.