Top Ideas from Retailer Roundtables at Furniture First

The top retail idea from the Furniture First symposium came from Table 9, which included Jamie Winter of Furniture Mall of Kansas, who pitched the winning idea.

ORLANDO, Fla. — With Better Call Saul firmly entrenched in today’s pop culture landscape thanks to the hit TV show, Better Call Angelique may soon find its way into the furniture industry lexicon. thanks to a winning idea furniture firstSymposium.

The idea, presented by Kansas Furniture Mall owner Jamie Winter, who used the expertise of a business tax adviser to take advantage of the employee retention credit, was a hit as retailers revealed their best idea at dinner.

“We had heard in the news about the Employee Retention Credit, and there are several ways to qualify. The first is for a significant reduction in sales, and we didn’t meet that requirement, so we assumed we wouldn’t be eligible,” Winter told Furniture Today the day after the dinner. “We continued our research and realized that we were qualified, but it is difficult to understand how to apply and obtain the credit. We found an expert in the field and brought them on board, and they made it very simple. »

Over dinner, Winter asked if the gathered retailers liked the money that came with the Paycheck Protection Program at the start of the pandemic. Many have indicated that they have, so he went on to explain how store owners can take advantage of the ERC, which is a refundable payroll tax credit for 2020 and 2021. Businesses that have experienced a significant drop in revenue, businesses that have been affected by government COVID orders or any business affected due to suppliers being affected by government COVID orders are eligible.

The potential payout is $5,000 per employee for 2020 and $21,000 per employee for 2021. In his presentation, Winter used the example of a store with 25 employees, which means he could recoup 125,000 $ for 2020 and $525 for 2021 for a grand total of $650,000.

While these refunds are eye-catching, Winter said it’s a complicated process because the bill is 800 pages long and has had four major updates, and retailers must document specific government orders that allow them to qualify. He said most accountants wouldn’t touch it and wouldn’t know how to research it, and there was no form to fill out.

To that end, Furniture Mall of Kansas sought out and found Angelique Garcia at Warner-Robinson, a group of corporate tax consultants in Kansas City, Mo., at (361) 343-1361. He noted that the service has a pre-negotiated cost of 15% (or free, if the retailer is not eligible).

“I had a lot of feedback last night, and today people are working to get their employee retention credit approved. We’ve made it easy to call someone for help from an expert to do all the hard work and make it an easy process,” Winter said.

Earlier in the day, the retailers held a series of roundtables where they brainstormed ideas, with the best from each table winning a dinner presentation. Other ideas that made the cut included:

  • Sale Bingo, presented by Jay Hawkins of Room to Room of Tupelo, Miss.
  • VIP text codes, presented by Amber Beane of Room to Room of Tupelo, Miss.
  • A QR code to a Google Reviews page, presented by Kyle Deets of Deets Furniture of Norfolk, Neb.
  • An in-house magazine, hosted by Lisa Hawkins of Room to Room of Tupelo, Miss.
  • A value exchange board, communicating to sales which products need to be moved, by Cailey Ehgoetz of Michael Alan Home Furnishings of Lake Havasu City, Arizona.
  • A booster club sale by Pam Miller of Miller Home Furniture & Mattress of Falls Creek, Pennsylvania.
  • Increase Protection Plans, by Travis Turner of Turner Furniture of Avon Park, Florida.
  • Digital Business Cards by Austin and Klay Klopfenstein of Home Rooms of Fort Wayne, Ind.

Winter said the exchange of ideas is one of the best parts of the annual Furniture First gathering.

“That’s a big reason we come,” he said. “Usually the best ideas session is the one where you get the most things that you can take home and implement in your business.”

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