The pandemic brought about an acceleration in spending for home improvement projects in 2020. Lockdowns and thus minimal competition for disposable income fueled the increase. According to the U.S. Department of Census, Monthly Retail Sales Report, sales of Home Improvement products rose 12.5 percent in 2020. The Home Improvement Research Institute (HIRI) and IHS Markit are predicting sales to slow by about -0.1 percent on the consumer side in 2021, but a continued increase in spending from professionals (5.3 percent). This translates into a 1.5 percent increase for the industry overall in 2021.
According to the HIRI Home Improvement Project Intent Tracking Survey for the first quarter of 2021, 72.8 percent of homeowners are planning to do more work on their homes in the first half of 2021. Master bedroom and bathroom projects are now on the increase, thus products associated with plumbing, fixtures, hardware, paint, and flooring will be in demand. These items tend to be purchased in-store as homeowners want to see and feel the products.
Companies should focus on the consumer experience across channels. Consumers interact with brands and retailers across numerous platforms. Now, the in-store shopping experience and user experience are equally important, and consumers expect their experiences to be exceptional and increasingly more connected.
Consumer’s satisfaction with products and retailers is influenced by relationships and is significantly higher among consumers who get recommendations from pros, family and friends. Companies can connect with their consumer in-store by cultivating and driving differentiation with informative displays and signage that also offer powerful recommendations by industry pros.
It is important to keep shoppers excited and inspired while shopping. Targeted messaging on signage, displays, and packaging help shoppers easily find the various products they need for their projects. Signage and displays throughout the store should be reflective of the different types of products available and thus merchandised accordingly.
Vanguard’s digital printing capabilities can help as it allows for printing on a variety of materials. Due to its versatility, digital printing allows brand and retailers to easy target messaging towards the specific projects or store locations. Cross merchandising strategies also work well in this category
as shoppers like to be inspired with complementary products and vivid imagery. Vanguard Companies can provide project-based and multi-vendor options to help
brands and retailers with these efforts.
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