RECENT ARTICLES
  • National Retail Federation Renews Push for Online Sales Tax

    by AQUA Editors May 2017

    The National Retail Federation is renewing its efforts in Congress to require online sellers to collect sales tax the same as local stores.

    “With more states passing sales tax laws or going to court, pressure is building on Congress to finally address this issue,” says NRF Senior Vice President for Government Affairs David French. “The states know they can’t fix this on their own, but they agree with retailers that Congress has stalled for far too long. Online sellers should not...

  • 2017 SOI Retail Report: Brick and Mortar, Empowered

    by Cailley Hammel May 2017

    With the recession well in the rearview mirror, distanced by several years of incremental success, pool and spa retailers can finally exhale. Things are looking up, including the industry's outlook on the future.

    According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, personal income increased 2.6 percent from 2015 to 2016 and disposable personal income increased 3.9 percent, both of which are encouraging for the luxury good market. In all, the National Retail Federation estimates sales will...

  • The Chillbo Baggins: For Epic Adventures on Land and Sea

    by Kathryn Howard May 2017

    Why defeat dragons when you can chill with them? Pool and spa retailers now have a new, inflatable outdoor furniture option that enables their customers to enjoy the outdoors both in or out of the water: the Chillbo Baggins.

    "Our mission is to inspire more people to get outside and connect with the world!" the company says on its website. "We wanted to create a product that complements and enhances all the awesome places that you might find yourself."

    RELATED:...

  • Spinning Triumph From Tragedy

    by AQUA Editors May 2017

    Laura Metro knows what fear in a helicopter feels like.

    In 2011, her 3-year-old son, Clay, fell victim to a near-drowning accident in a public pool in Bethany Beach, Del. A bystander who had only seen CPR on TV started trying to revive him until the paramedics arrived. Metro rode with her son for 30 minutes in a medivac helicopter to a hospital in Wilmington where Clay was treated.

    That terrifying flight, she says, "was the beginning of a much greater...

  • Standing Still Can Kill Your Business

    by John Tschohl May 2017

    I find this statistic unbelievable: the U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics found that companies with fewer than 100 employees gave only 12 minutes of manager training every six months. Organizations with 100-500 employees provided just six minutes.

    The following statistic is even more proof that ongoing training is essential for employee development and the growth of a company. A long-term research project commissioned by

  • Who is More Conveniently Located for Pool Owners: Specialty Retailers or Big Box Stores?

    by Bil Kennedy May 2017

    Are pool stores closer to their pool-owning customers than mass merchants (like Walmart)? Pkdata takes a look.

    In retail, they say, location is everything. That would have to be especially true for pool stores. All other things being equal, would you rather have your pool store located within 10 miles of 5,000 households in Connecticut or Arizona?

    The answer isn’t as obvious as you...

  • Stars are Aligned for the Pool and Spa Industry

    by Peter Ricchiuti May 2017

    This economic recovery (now in its 90th month) is the third-longest, and most ignored, expansion on record. By calendar standards it seems to be "late in the game," but we may well go into "extra innings." As Jim Paulsen, chief investment strategist at Wells Capital Management, notes, "In this recovery, companies have never overstaffed, overbuilt or over-inventoried."

    We still don't see the telltale signs of a stretched recovery or a looming recession. Interest rates remain...

  • NESPA Releases Results from 2017 Pool & Spa Industry Survey

    by AQUA Editors May 2017

    NESPA has released the results of its second annual industry survey, a report that covers business trends, insights and strategies among pool and spa professionals in the Northeastern U.S.

    "Keeping our fingers on the pulse of our industry is essential for NESPA so that we can best serve our members and help our members best serve their customers,” says NESPA President Irene Insignares.  "As a business owner, having the chance to see what other companies are trying in the areas of...

  • Up In Your Grill: The Basics of Selling Grills

    by Kathryn Howard May 2017

    From neighborhood tailgates to elaborate backyard installations, grills are everywhere you look. In fact, according to a story from the L.A. Times, three out of four U.S. adults own a grill or smoker. Given that impressive statistic, it’s no surprise pool and spa retailers are increasingly adding grills to showrooms, eager to tap into a thriving market.

    However, retailers who wish to venture into grills are faced with an abundance of options, with gas, charcoal and wood pellet...

  • Sizing Up Saunas

    by Eric Herman April 2017

    When talking to sauna enthusiasts and those who sell them, the experience and health benefits are almost always a primary focus, many of which are well known and have been widely discussed for years — if not decades.

    They are quick to point out that saunas help prevent fatal heart attacks,...