Order up to 5 FREE Samples! Find Out More

A Guide to Retail Flooring Options

There are many retail flooring material options on the market today. Choosing the right flooring material can make or break a retail shop’s appearance. However, it’s not just about what looks great.

Any retail store owner will tell you that a retail space needs to be both visually appealing and practical to maintain. What retail flooring options fit the bill? Are there any retail flooring options that are both amazing to look at and easy to maintain?

Here’s a complete guide to retail flooring options, including what to look for, viable options, and the top choice for retail flooring.  

Flooring Material Options for High Traffic Areas

When selecting a retail flooring material, there are a few things to keep in mind. Retail shops are generally high-traffic areas whose interior design needs to reflect the brand and product offering.   

So, in general, it’s important to find a flooring material option that offers:

  •  Durability
  •  Easy Maintenance
  •  Design Versatility
  •  Longevity  

Cost and installation time might also be essential factors to consider (depending on your needs and goals). For instance, if you have a tight budget and need the floor installed before a quickly approaching grand opening, then cost and installation time might play a role in which flooring material is right for your project.

The following options are some of the viable contenders:

Engineered Hardwood

Engineered hardwood is a strong and long-lasting material that is manufactured with a top-facing, real-wood veneer. Some styles of engineered hardwood can be more resistant to water than traditional wood floors, and it’s much easier to maintain. Its rough surface texture hides scrapes and scuff marks, which is a concern in high-traffic areas.

You can arrange engineered hardwood in a variety of styles. Featuring Jasper Engineered Hardwood Oak Herringbone Collection in Red Oak Natural SKU: 15272207

However, it can cost as much as hardwood floors, so engineered hardwood probably isn’t the best option for your retail shop project if budget is a concern. It is also a real wood product, so if the wood look doesn’t fit the shop’s brand, it isn’t the best option.  

Vinyl Flooring

Thanks to vinyl, light-colored retail flooring can be achieved without worrying about wear and tear. Featuring Vesdura Vinyl Planks Harbor Collection in Iris SKU: 15270555

High-end vinyl flooring is durable, thick, and long-lasting. It’s also waterproof in most cases, scratch-resistant, and a breeze to maintain. Simple sweeping and occasional damp mopping will keep vinyl flooring looking great for up to twenty years. Vinyl also comes in various shapes, colors, sizes, and patterns to match virtually any design motif.

Vinyl flooring is perfect for areas with heavy foot traffic. Featuring Vesdura Vinyl Planks Elevation Collection in Uluru SKU: 15262457

Additionally, vinyl is more cost-effective than most options on the market, and it’s straightforward to install.

Porcelain Tile

Porcelain tile is one of the most durable flooring options on the market. Featuring Salerno Porcelain Tile in Statuario Extra SKU: 15191920

Porcelain tile is a versatile, durable, and easy to clean retail flooring option. It’s long-lasting when correctly installed. The cost of porcelain tile can incur relatively high upfront costs, and the installation can take a bit of time and expertise, but long term benefits and lower maintenance can make it a safer financial decision in the long run.

The slip resistance of porcelain tile is an important thing to keep in mind. The last thing a retail shop owner wants is people injuring themselves in their store because of slippery tiles.


Laminate flooring provides an affordable wood-look style. Featuring Lamton Laminate Defiant Collection in Harvest Chestnut SKU: 15271566

Laminate is a low-cost retail flooring option that is scratch-resistant and durable. It comes in a variety of different styles to fit any retail shop’s motif. Laminate is also water-resistant and easy to maintain. When correctly installed, laminate can be a durable option for retail stores.

Laminate can mimic unique wood grain flooring styles. Featuring Lamton Laminate Summa Collection in Refined Brass SKU: 15263486

You’ll want to keep in mind that laminate isn’t completely waterproof, so it can warp if moisture stays on it for too long. There are high-quality laminate options, but most laminate options are cheaply made, so you’ll have to look around to make sure you’re getting one that can withstand the high traffic demands of a retail store.

True Hardwood

While typically not the most durable or cost-effective choice for retail flooring, genuine hardwood offers unmatched luxury and elegance for a high-end boutique retail setting. Some hardwood is designed to handle more foot traffic than others.

At BuildDirect, we have created two new hardwood flooring options that are specifically designed for commercial spaces that desire a premium look. The following collections come with a 3 year light commercial warranty:

Mazama Hardwood – Pico Brazilian Oak Collection

Our Mazama collection includes durable exotic wood from Brazil with a similar look of domestic Oak. It comes in a variety of modern coastal colors.

Jasper Hardwood – Foundation Collection

Our Jasper hardwood flooring collection is a 100% Canadian Made product. Thanks to a precise milling process, the foundation collection comes in a wide range of colors, species, and specs. This collection comes in both solid and engineered options.

The Best Retail Flooring Material

If you want durable, easy-to-maintain, long-lasting retail flooring that’s both cost-effective and easy to install – vinyl flooring is the way to go. Vinyl checks all the boxes for high-traffic retail stores and commercial buildings. Plus, it comes in so many styles that you’re sure to find one that fits your needs.

Vinyl is a fantastic option for shop owners and installers alike because it looks great and is simple to install. For contractors, vinyl is a flooring option that passes quality and installation standards. It’s not outrageously difficult to install, yet it looks just as lovely as the harder-to-install options like hardwood and tile.   

If you’re looking for the best retail flooring material option, look no further than luxury vinyl.

How to Choose Vinyl Flooring Products

Vinyl flooring has three wear layers, so you’ll need to have an idea of how much foot traffic your retail store will get before deciding on a wear layer. The most durable vinyl has an enhanced urethane finish, and it’s the most resistant to heavy foot traffic, stains, scratches, and general wear and tear.

Other than the wear layer, you’ll also want to look into the backing. The thicker the backing, the higher the quality. Then, find a pattern and style that suits your store’s brand and aesthetic.

Your best bet is to go with a trusted vinyl supplier like BuildDirect. We specialize in high-quality vinyl, perfect for high traffic retail flooring. Plus, if you join PRO rewards, you can access unlimited free samples and receive a 5% credit on your purchases.

Sign up for PRO Rewards for free and get vinyl flooring samples today.  

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (12 rating, average rating is 2.17/5)


The BuildDirect Product Expert Team is here to support any questions you may have regarding your home improvement project.