What are the Different Types of Commercial Flooring?

Dakota Davis

Commercial flooring is heavy duty floor covering that is used in industrial and corporate environments. It comes in a variety of materials and is usually designed to offer some combination of durability, cost-efficiency, practical maintainability, and visual appeal. Common types of commercial flooring include laminates and vinyl, man-made stone like ceramic tiling, concrete, rubber, and carpet. Before making a selection, the demands that will most likely be placed upon it should be considered.

Bamboo is gaining popularity as a type of commercial flooring.
Bamboo is gaining popularity as a type of commercial flooring.

Laminate and vinyl flooring, such as vinyl composition tile (VCT) and linoleum, are some of the most popular types of commercial flooring. They are durable, stain resistant, and low-maintenance. They are also cost effective and attractive, making them popular in the retail sector. They come in an expansive array of colors and patterns and can be designed to replicate the look of tile or hardwood at an affordable cost.

Some homeowners choose engineered hardwood flooring over solid hardwoods because it is more resistant to changes in temperature and moisture.
Some homeowners choose engineered hardwood flooring over solid hardwoods because it is more resistant to changes in temperature and moisture.

Man-made stone flooring is a stylish commercial flooring option with remarkable longevity. It's initially more expensive than other options, but it has long-term cost effectiveness. One of the easiest types of flooring to keep clean, glazed ceramic tile, called quarry tile, is used prolifically in food service areas. Unglazed ceramic tile, terrazzo, and Mexican Saltillo tiles are also common choices.

Laminate floors require little maintenance aside from cleaning.
Laminate floors require little maintenance aside from cleaning.

Concrete is used globally for construction and is incredibly durable and affordable. It is frequently covered with another material like vinyl or carpet, although the edgy, industrial look of bare concrete is gaining popularity in retail stores and other venues. Valued for its strength, concrete can be stained or etched for added style.

Linoleum is a durable flooring option.
Linoleum is a durable flooring option.

Rubber is generally chosen for industrial, exercise, and sporting facilities, along with hospitals and schools. It’s naturally hygienic, easy to clean, waterproof, and stain-resistant. It also provides natural cushioning and insulation, and its resilience makes it a good commercial flooring option for heavy impact or high traffic areas.

While carpet is considered luxurious, it's easily stained or ruined by moisture and is difficult to maintain. It is most often selected in offices, hotels, or areas that need sound insulation. Carpet tiles can be a practical alternative, since they provide the indulgence of carpet but allow for spot specific replacement if damaged.

As the emphasis on sustainability continues to grow, more "green" buildings are being constructed. Materials like cork, bamboo, and natural linoleum are appearing more frequently as commercial flooring options because of their renewability and recyclability. In addition to having positive effects on the environment, they are also said to create safer work environments.

A concrete floor is both durable and affordable.
A concrete floor is both durable and affordable.

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Discussion Comments


As much as I love wood floors and as beautiful as they are, for many businesses and industries demand highly durable floors. There are many types but my heart belongs to the decorative epoxy flooring: all the benefits of epoxy and many beautiful options for style and color. Thanks for the article!


My dad has worked in a number of areas of the construction field. He spent a few years working for a company that did commercial flooring installation. I used to go to the showrooms with him sometimes.

The company he worked for had good quality flooring. The installers were all very knowledgeable about what they did. They were involved in each step of the process, from estimates and planning through installation and inspection.

They prided themselves on customer satisfaction and quality work. With a well established company, pre-ordering and warehousing are common. You didn’t see product sitting around on a loading dock or in a truck for lengths of time. Orders were done to suit clients’ needs. I did not know just how much goes in to commercial flooring installation.


I worked in retail when I was younger. I once had an opportunity to work with a company as they opened a store in town. We basically put the place together from the ground up, not counting the building itself. It was quite a mess for a little while.

Pulling the existing flooring to have it replaced was done by professionals. We pretty much stayed out of the way for that. Our boss decided to go with commercial wood flooring.

We went with a company that had done some of the grocery stores in the area. The floor turned out quite nicely. The light color chosen for the wood gave a warm tone to the store. It was a lot of fun being part of putting the store together. I was surprised what an impact the flooring choice can make.

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