The North American Retail Hardware Association (NRHA) and Independent We Stand recently announced the findings of their “Home Sweet Home Study,” which examined the economic impact of supporting independent home improvement retailers as opposed to national home center chains. The study, conducted by economic analysis and strategic planning firm, Civic Economics, was released on May 6, 2015 at the National Hardware Show® in Las Vegas.
The July issue of Hardware Retailing magazine will include additional insights into this research. Along with expanded coverage of the findings, Hardware Retailing will also provide an overview of the complete range of promotional tools NRHA and Independent We Stand will be providing retailers so they can make consumers in their own markets aware of the tangible community benefits to shopping locally for home improvement supplies and services.
Key highlights include:
- Purchasing home improvement products from locally owned retailers generates twice as much local economic activity than purchases made at big-box chain stores.
- Purchasing STIHL products from an independent dealer results in a 71% increase in local economic activity compared to purchasing comparable outdoor power equipment products at the major chains.
- Together, the two largest national home center chains sold more than $114 billion in goods in 2013 (excluding installation services). If just 10% of that business had gone instead to independently owned retailers, hometowns around the country would enjoy the benefits of an additional $1.3 billion in economic activity.
“We worked hard to create dynamic research that accurately depicts the economic influence locally owned establishments have on an individual community and how that initial impact has the potential to generate national economic activity. It’s crucial that retailers and consumers alike are aware of the impression we leave when we choose to shop local,” says Dan Tratensek, NRHA vice president and publisher of Hardware Retailing.
Tratensek presented the findings along with Bill Brunelle, co-founder of Independent We Stand, and Roger Phelps, promotional communications manager at STIHL Inc. Additionally, they introduced the “Home Sweet Home Economic Impact Calculator,” which allows a consumer to enter their ZIP code and see what kind of impact buying at a local home improvement retailer can have in their community.
This report builds on the findings of previous analyses of impacts locally owned businesses have over national chains on communities. One of Independent We Stand’s goals is to educate consumers about the importance and strong economic benefits of supporting locally owned businesses, and through research, they have found a way to do so.
“There’s no doubt that supporting local businesses is beneficial to a community. Previous research has shown that independently owned businesses provide substantial, quantifiable economic benefits. Our work with NRHA has produced some exciting results, which illustrate the impact specifically within the hardware, outdoor power equipment, paint, and lumber industry. We are thrilled to share the findings of the Home Sweet Home Study and their potential impact on locally owned hardware stores,” Brunelle says.
To view the full presentation, click here.
For more information on Independent We Stand, visit www.IndependentWeStand.org.