How to Handle Color Variation Complaints

By Ben Nystrom, 07/12/12

Most hardwood flooring customers aren't experts about the material. Even if they know the basics about good floor installation and maintenance, chances are they will still be surprised about other features of the product. One of the most common of these aspects is color variation.

Like any natural product, hardwood flooring with vary in shade and luster as it ages. While this may seem like common sense to industry experts, end consumers don't often realize just how much a species' color will change over time. This can lead to complaints from customers months or even years down the road. Luckily, there are a few things you can do before the sale to help minimize the number of color variation complaints you receive. The following are three of the best tactics we've come across over the years. Enjoy!

1. Be upfront and honest.

No doubt you're familiar with the old axiom, "Honesty is the best policy". Well, that applies especially well to instances of color variation. If you let your customers know what sort of color variation to expect from their new hardwood before they buy, you all but eliminate the chance of them feeling cheated or lied to when their floor inevitably starts to change shade.

2. Name the most flooring types most prone to color variation.

Similarly, telling your customers which hardwood species and varieties are more prone to color variation gives them the heads-up on any future hardwood purchases they make. This not only reduces the number of color variation complaints you're likely to have, it positions you as a knowledgeable, trust-worthy company that puts its customers' best interests before its bottom line.

3. Give tips on reducing color variation.

There are a few simple maintenance tips you can give your customers to help them reduce the amount of color variation they will experience with their new floor. Here are the top three:

Use the right finish.

If the customer is planning on finishing the floor onsite, recommend they use a high-quality finish that has a high level of UV protection.

Avoid excessive sun exposure.

Sunlight is the number of cause of color variation in hardwood flooring. Putting shades and drapes over windows during the day can go a long way in protecting your customers' floor colors from fading.

Clean regularly.

Though regular floor maintenance doesn't directly protect against color variation, it does help keep your floors looking shiny and new, which can distract from any color change the floors may experience.

Color variation is an inevitability in this industry, and so are customer complaints. However, by following the above steps you can dramatically reduce the number of color variation complaints you receive. This means a happier customer service department and more satisfied customers - a true win-win.

Contact your Nova USA representative today to learn more about color variation and hardwood flooring.

By Ben Nystrom, 07/12/12

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