February 16, 2023

Buying a doormat wasn’t always complicated. You’d go to the hardware store and there would be a couple of styles to choose from. You and all your neighbors basically had the same choices, so everyone’s mats looked similar. There wasn’t much to think about.

Today, that’s not the case. You might find a dozen different styles at the hardware store, and shopping online grants even more options. Do you choose rubber mats? Carpet? Coir? Should you layer your mats? Which sizes should they be?

The Personalized Doormats Company is here to break down the basics and help you pick the right doormats for your home or business. Discover the important differences between indoor and outdoor mats.

The Purpose of a Doormat

The main aspect that differentiates indoor and outdoor doormats is their purpose. A doormat can have more than one function, but it’s often different depending on location. Residential doormats also serve different purposes from commercial ones, though there can be some overlap. Below are the most common purposes for doormats, be they indoor or outdoor, residential or commercial.

Cleaning Shoes

If you were to ask 100 people why doormats exist, most would probably answer that they’re for cleaning shoes. It’s pretty simple—you want to keep the inside of your home or business clean, so you give people a way to clean their shoes before entering. Back in the day, people used to have iron boot scrapers outside buildings for the same purpose.

Absorbing Water

In businesses and retail locations, having a slippery floor is a major hazard. In fact, when you have a slippery floor, you’re supposed to warn people with a sign. Water-absorbent mats are one way to combat slippery floors in commercial locations. The mats soak up all the moisture from guests’ shoes, leaving less water tracked all over the store.

Advertising and Branding

If you think about it, a doormat is basically a sign you can walk on. It’s the perfect place to put an advertisement, or even just your company logo. Experts have long known that the more often people see your brand, the more likely they are to form an attachment to it. This is how you create loyal customers who return to your business over and over.

If you have a product you want to promote, a doormat makes for the perfect poster space. You can even use the mat to show people where the product is in your store.

Preventing Fatigue

Anti-fatigue mats have been around in the industrial and commercial worlds for a while. However, they’re starting to become popular in homes, too. Anti-fatigue mats are thicker and squishier than regular rugs and floor mats. The extra cushion makes it easier for people to stand in one spot for long periods of time.

Protecting Floors

This one is more common in residential spaces. For example, if you have a hardwood floor, you might put down rugs and floor mats to help protect it from dents and scrapes. However, you might also need to use floor mats to protect the floor in industrial spaces. One example is using stains in a woodshop, which can get all over the floor.

Displaying Decorative Pieces

Many homeowners put doormats outside their home entrances just to make them look welcoming. If you think about it, many people probably enter their homes through the garage, making front doormats mostly decorative.

The Differences Between Indoor and Outdoor Mats

Indoor and outdoor mats have a few key differences. Of course, not all mats follow these guidelines, and commercial mats may have even more differences.

Indoor Mats

Indoor mats are usually thinner than their outdoor counterparts because many people layer them under furniture. If the mats are too thick, the furniture won’t sit level; it’s also easy to trip on high-pile mats. Additionally, indoor mats tend to have a carpet-like texture to be softer on feet. It’s also important to make sure your indoor mats have a non-slip backing if you place them on non-carpet flooring.

Outdoor Mats

People expect to be able to wipe their shoes on outdoor mats, so these doormats need to be made of coarser fibers. The coarse fibers work like a brush to clean the bottoms of shoes. These mats can also be thicker than indoor mats because you’re not layering them under furniture. The thickness helps pack in the fibers tightly, leading to a longer lifespan and better shoe cleaning. Outdoor mats can also have rubber borders, which help maintain the integrity of the mats in all kinds of weather.

The Best Choice

When you’re deciding between an indoor or outdoor mat, it helps to think about how you’ll use it. Your first step should be to assess the function of your doormat and what you want it to do. Then, consider some of the following information.

Traffic Volume

How often do you expect to use your doormat? If it’s going in a residential space, how many people and animals live with you? Do you have guests over often? For commercial spaces, mats in private offices experience very different traffic from those in hallways and common areas.

Weather Conditions

The weather in your region can have a dramatic impact on your doormat. For example, coir doormats are very popular for their stylish appearance, but they can fade and disintegrate in extreme weather. The factors to watch out for are frequent precipitation and long days of direct, scorching sunlight. These two problems will deteriorate most mats.

Entrance Overhang

For outdoor mats, you’ll want to think about how much protection the mat gets from overhangs near the entrance. A significant overhang can reduce the amount of water and sunlight exposure for your mat, preserving it longer. Without an overhang, your mat will need more upkeep, like sweeping and brushing, to stay in good shape.

Extra Large Mats

If you’re looking for an extra-large welcome mat for your home or business, take a look at our supply. The Personalized Doormats Company carries decorative monogram mats, business logo mats, and Waterhog doormats, plus many others. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you have and questions or need help choosing the perfect mat.

The Differences Between Indoor and Outdoor Mats

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