Keeping entranceway carpet clean?
Below you can see the entrance door to my condo and the carpet leading up to the first landing where I keep my shoes (and guests shoes, I was brought up with not wearing shoes in the house and took that with me).
Right outside that entrance door is a foyer area that I share with my downstairs neighbor. When my shoes are especially dirty or wet I take them off down there, but on normal days I walk up to the mat on the landing.
First I would like to clean the carpet (which was just put in by the people I bought the condo from). Just wiping it with a wet towel makes a clean spot, but there has got to be an easier way. My Mother thinks that shampooing it with one of those machines could take out any stain fighting agent in the carpet and make it so any further stains will never come out. So what should I do?
After that, I would like to protect this carpet. What could I do in that respect? I am willing to put down one of those plastic mats if I have to, but I would like somehing that looks decent.