Exhibition Design & Flooring

Aug 18th 2015

Flooring is a vital part of the overall design of a trade show exhibit space and can be a remarkable accent feature. Without the right layout, color, or floor type, the foundation of the display space may be sending the wrong message. However, the right style will provide a foundation perfect for consistency from bottom to top.

There are many different flooring options to choose from for an exhibit space. Whether you want a printed floor featuring a logo or the classic look and feel of carpet, it's important to choose wisely.

Flooring can even be used strategically to help obtain show goals, such as establishing a certain traffic flow within an exhibit space. Nimlok NYC has teamed up with Brumark on numerous projects where an inlay “path” is designed in the carpet or other flooring. This creates a flow and direction for traffic and attendees.

The inlay kills two birds with one stone: it supports the desired traffic flow and adds an eye-catching element to the flooring. Carpet and vinyl wood floor inlays can really boost an exhibit’s presence.

Trade Show Exhibition Flooring Options

Make sure you are aware of the different types of flooring offered and understand how the benefits may apply to the particular exhibit or application you are planning. Be sure to consider wiring, comfort, colors and reusability.

  • FlexFloor - An easy-to-install flooring option with multiple finishes and designs, FlexFloor provides a great foundation. You won't have to worry about spills or any type of stain with this flooring option.
  • Carpet - A very budget-friendly choice, carpet provides a soft and colorful foundation with plenty of durability.
  • Interlocking – With a number of different styles and colors available, interlocking flooring is easy to install. You can easily mix and match colors to create patterns or pathways. It also is very portable.
  • LED Floors - A bold, attention-grabbing design choice, LED floors provide something you cannot get from other options. You can program the ultra-bright LED lights into millions of patterns.
  • Printed Floors – Printed floors can showcase a logo or use an image that attracts attention, conveys a message or compliments a design.
  • Raised Flooring – Raised flooring is great for creating a classic, high-end look or putting an item on display, such as a vehicle or a larger product. Check out the new Magnitude Raised Flooring system, which has attractive luxury vinyl tiles (LVT) surface panels with a magnetic backing that attaches to the subfloor for simple installation and easy updates.
  • Specialty Flooring - Many different specialty options are available, from turf flooring to eco-friendly cork, flexible slate flooring and much more.

Choosing the right flooring option is more than just a design choice. You will also need to consider the storing and shipping necessary for each type of flooring.

Logistics, Storage and Shipping

While the design of a trade show exhibit is very important, so are the logistics. Making sure the flooring can be stored, shipped and easily installed is a very important part of the trade show puzzle.

When choosing flooring, consider how much time will be needed for installation. Some types of flooring, such as interlocking or carpet tiles, provide a very portable option that installs very quickly. However, other flooring options may require a little bit more time for installation because they include padding, leveling, or more intricate details.

Each type of flooring may have different requirements when it comes to shipping and storage, as well. Make sure you understand the requirements beforehand, so that you can avoid any surprises while preparing for the show.

Some Creative Ideas:

  • Mirror the logo on a hanging sign (bottom graphic) with an inlay logo on the carpet in the middle of the exhibit space.


  • Create a walkway or path to control traffic. Get attendees to follow the appropriate flow to maximize their experience.


  • Use simple and creative marketing such as slogans and logos in strategic areas of the flooring to grab attention.


  • Mix styles. For example, use wood grain flooring and carpet in the same space. This can divide certain areas or simply accentuate the floor.


Paul Conway is the President of both Nimlok NYC and Nimlok Orlando and has been in the business for over 26 years. He is Nimlok's #1 producing, independently-owned distributor in the world.