Hear Top Speakers From Around the Globe at the 2013 IHA Congress, May 7-9
HELD CONCURRENTLY WITH THE NATIONAL HARDWARE SHOW LAS VEGAS, NEVADA, USA
Here’s just a sample of the top lineup of speakers you’ll hear at the 2013 IHA Congress and Global Home Improvement Conference. Don’t miss this inspiring event AND attend one of the world’s largest trade fairs – the National Hardware Show! Plan now to attend.
TOP EUROPEAN RETAILER
“What’s Happening in the European DIY Market”
Speaker: Erwin van Osta
CEO, HUBO and President of BricoAlliance, Belgium
Erwin van Osta is CEO of Hubo, a rapidly growing Belgian retailer with more than 120 stores across the country. The retailer focuses on the DIY market with a high-quality selection of brand-name products. Hear Erwin’s thoughts on today’s DIY consumer and learn about his approach to success with consumers in today’s challenging environment.
BRITISH EXPERT ON CONSUMERS AND BRANDS
“The Future of Brands and Branded Environments”
Speaker: Ibrahim Ibrahim
Portland Design, London, UK
Originally trained as an aeronautical engineer, Ibrahim also holds postgraduate degrees from the Royal College of Arts and Imperial College London; and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts. From his broad background of consulting with the world’s largest companies, he will share his passion for understanding how consumers relate to branded environments and how technology will influence the way we work, shop, play, communicate and love!
ITALIAN LAWN AND GARDEN RETAILER
“A Passion for Lawn and Garden”
Speaker: Marco Orlandelli
President, Organizzazione Orlandelli, Marcaria, Italy
For over thirty years Gruppo Orlandelli has grown its successful international business in retail garden centers, commercial farming, green area design and a consulting company for garden centers and DIY retailers. Marco will share his thoughts on the dynamic lawn and garden market and today’s DIY consumer.
U.S. LEARN FROM GOOGLE
"The Multi-Screen World: New Consumer Behaviors"
Speaker: Kathy Daly-Jennings
Head of Industry, Retail Practice, Google
Phones, desktops, tablets and tablets: Today’s consumers have multiple screens and tools to access home improvement information and products. Join us to hear Google present the newest in multi-screen research and home improvement trends. Gain a deeper understanding of these new consumer habits and their impact on your products and services.
U.S. ONLINE EXPERT
"Get Connected: Finding, Engaging and Maintaining Consumers Online"
Speaker: Tim Dahl
Founder of Charles & Hudson and former producer of This Old House, Elle Decor, Metropolitan Home and Woman’s Day
This seminar will teach attendees where and how to generate a more dynamic online presence and content that will drive more consumer traffic to your site. Dahl will offer insight into reaching a core audience and finding ways to expanding into new market segments.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
2013 IHA Congress – www.ihaworldwide.com
National Hardware Show – www.nationalhardwareshow.com
NRHA All-Industry Conference – www.nrhaconference.com
DON’T MISS THIS IMPORTANT INTERNATIONAL EVENT!
News From the U.K.
Retail Buyers Out in Force for Totally Shows 2013
Visitors and attendees alike were thrilled with the outcome of the Totally DIY & Totally Tools trade show, which ran at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry from Feb. 10 -12.
"This is the best trade show we've been at in at least ten years!" says Chris Mahon of Am-Tech.
Fellow exhibitors and visitors alike, who despite the snow, which fell overnight on Feb. 10, made it safely to the show, echoed his sentiments.
"We have had a cracking show!" says exhibition director Paul Grinsell. "And it's because of a real team effort from exhibitors and us to target and invite quality buyers to come along. Everyone worked really hard to find the right people to invite and it seems to have paid off!
The show hosted buyers from across all the DIY and tools sales channels - multiples, TV, online, independent, high street, and all types - decorators, plumbers and builders merchants, hardware and general stores and tool specialists.
Other aspects of the show also worked well this year. The free seminars, which ran on Monday and Tuesday, featured speakers who all gave their audience a real sense of the bigger DIY and retail picture. Michael Weedon, deputy ceo and communication director of bira, Simon Foy and Daniel Fearnley of market researchers GfK, John Herbert, general secretary of EDRA and Steve Collinge, commercial director of Insight DIY, certainly left everyone with plenty to ponder and great ideas for the future to consider.
Products submitted to the New Product Showcase this year were scrutinized by a strong panel of retail buyers comprising Sarah Critchard of Axminster Tools, Mark Nixon of Right Price DIY, Paul Andrews from Home Hardware Southwest, David Dickens from JW Martin & Partners and Pritesh Pancholi of Melton Ironmongers. They picked out six “Best New Product” Gold award winners and five Silver award winners. The Golds went to:
- Garden - Slug Gone by Vitax
- DIY - Everbuild's Rendagrip
- Tools - LadderLimb
- Hardware - Youngman Group's Loft Ladder
- Decorative - Samurai Paint's Canbrush
- Security - The Solar Centre's Astron 64 solar security light
The winning products were swiftly put on display so that visitors could easily review them, while at the same time they could also take a look at a display of historic hand and power tools, courtesy of John Collier, Monument Tools.
"This has been a great start for the shows in our new home at the Ricoh Arena. We wanted to put the emphasis on quality and not quantity this year and that seems to have paid off - but of course, we always want more, so we are looking forward to building and improving on what appears to be a good formula," says Paul Grinsell.
The 2014 Totally DIY & Totally Tools shows will run for three days, Feb. 16 – 18, in the Jaguar Hall at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry.
Join Us for the Global DIY Summit
Rome 6 - 7 June 2013
A Message from Ralf Rahmede, General Manager fediyma, and John W. Herbert, General Secretary EDRA
The retail revolution is not coming - the retail revolution is already here!
Multichannel is dramatically changing the face of retailing. There has not just been an increase in Internet sales; there has been an explosion. Amazon is already talking about becoming the world's biggest retailer by the year 2016 overtaking Walmart. With sales now exceeding US$ 65bn, Amazon is enjoying sales increases of 27% compared to over a year ago.
How are the major retailers and major brand suppliers in our industry globally reacting to multichannel retailing? What is going to happen to bricks and mortar retailing? Will we need the same selling space in the future? What part will social media play in retailing tomorrow?
Top speakers from all over the world will be giving their answers to these questions in Rome. Click here to register to the 2nd Global DIY Summit. Visit the website for more information.
News From Europe
Kingfisher publishes first European Home Report 2012
Home is where the heart is, says Kingfisher’s European Home Report
Kingfisher, the home improvement retailer whose businesses include B&Q and Castorama, today unveiled its first European Home Report, a survey of 15,000 householders’ attitudes to home improvement. Covering eight European countries, the report provides unique insight into consumer and home improvement trends.
- 9 out of 10 households across Europe undertake home improvement projects
- Home improvement is a bigger priority than holidays
- Increasing a property’s value only comes 5th in a list of reasons to carry out home improvement. ‘Refreshing’ the home is 1st
- Internal painting and decorating is the number one home improvement activity
- 52% of householders plan to live in their home for at least 10 years
- 35% of respondents say they buy home improvement products online
Ian Cheshire, Group Chief Executive of Kingfisher plc, comments, “This report provides a unique snapshot of the way Europeans view their homes today. What is clear is that the home really is where the heart is for consumers across Europe. Households are planning to spend the same or more on home improvement in the coming year, but their motivations have changed. The “do it up and sell it on” property ladder approach that was evident in some countries during the economic boom years has moved towards a more emotional emphasis on creating a better home in order to enjoy a better quality of life.”
Home is where the heart is. The survey shows that home improvement is a clear priority for consumers across Europe, ranking ahead of holidays in terms of people’s spending priorities. 9 out of 10 householders say that they undertake some sort of work on their home, with two thirds of households planning to spend the same or more on home improvement in the coming year.
Increasing the value of the home came only fifth in a list of reasons to carry out home improvement behind wanting to refresh the home; wanting to live in a comfortable home; having to adapt due to changing family needs and deciding to improve rather than move. This reflects the economic environment with people increasingly viewing their house as a home, rather than a financial instrument.
More than half (52%) of householders plan to live in their home for at least 10 years, a clear sign of the “improve, don’t move” trend. A decade ago, in the UK at least, we were staring at the magnolia walls of the “Changing Rooms” generation as homeowners aspired to ‘do it up and sell it on’ to climb the property ladder. Now it appears that the emphasis has shifted away from using a house simply to make a profit and towards a desire to create a better home that will provide a better quality of life.
Adapting the Home. Throughout the countries surveyed, householders are adapting their homes for children living with the family longer or to accommodate elderly relatives. They are also responding to changes in technology to make it easier to work from home as well as altering the areas they use for entertaining. The research also suggests that consumers across the continent are putting more emphasis on time spent at home as lifestyles and working patterns change and that they are adapting their accommodation to allow more leisure activities (40%), entertaining (39%) and also working from home (23%). Consumers across most of Europe list their top home improvement activity as internal painting and decorating. Other top choices include renewing home furnishings, followed by upgrading a kitchen or bathroom.
Country differences. National differences are also apparent. The French, for example, have been the keenest DIY-ers in terms of how much they spent on home improvements in the past 12 months, with Poland, the UK & Ireland, Turkey and Germany spending the least. Householders in the UK & Ireland and in Germany are also much more likely than their counterparts elsewhere to improve their gardens, while in Turkey, home security and lighting are of greater importance.
Other key findings of the report include:
Everybody’s doing it
- Nine out of 10 Europeans are spending money on improving their homes, with nearly three quarters doing the work themselves.
- About a third of consumers undertake Do-It-Yourself tasks at least once a month, with one in 10 of these falling into the category of “weekend warriors” who carry out jobs in their homes on a weekly basis.
The Internet: Part of the toolkit
- Shopping habits show that the internet is used extensively when undertaking home improvement jobs, but mainly for research, comparing prices and seeking advice, rather than making purchases.
- Overall, 35% of respondents said they buy home improvement products online, with the Germans being the most likely to do so (48%) and the French the least (21%).
Eco is going mainstream
- Making their homes eco-friendly is an important issue for consumers across Europe, with (32%) saying it is “very important” to them.
- When asked to identify the best eco-investments for their homes, energy efficient products were the most popular, suggesting that the motivation to save money through lower energy bills is as important as saving the planet.
Useful Tips So Members Can
Improve Their Web Presence
American Express' Open Forum recently publicized this short comment in the U. S., but it is applicable to our members around the world:
Small businesses are finding that online advertising is both cheaper and more effective than conventional advertising, says Google executive Meir Brenner. “A business needs first of all to be on the Web so that people can access it even when the office is closed. Then it needs to develop the site itself and monitor it and later explore using tools like mobile or video,” Brenner explains.
Other ways to develop an online presence include getting involved in digital forums that focus on various products and carefully developing a Facebook page. “Don’t come in to Facebook and other online communities in a heavy-handed way,” says website developer Revital Salomon.
“These groups are a good way to get to know the competition as well as business in related and complementary areas that can be a source of referrals.”
Another tip offered is that on one's web site, a “Contact Us” section should be more than a fill-in form. It should include a business's name, address, phone number and email address. Customers, experts agree, are often frustrated when asked to fill in a form only.
Another tip is to be sure one's web site is not slow-loading. According to research conducted in the United Kingdom, 67% of web visitors who left sites did so because they loaded too slow. They found it difficult to find products, navigation was too difficult and it took too many steps to make a purchase.
In the U. S., major retailers and some hardware wholesalers supporting their retail customers are emphasizing “ship to store”, which encourages consumers to visit retail stores and perhaps buy other merchandise.
Email Marketing is a
Powerful Promotional Tool
More and more retailers of all kinds are beginning to use email marketing in their businesses.
They are finding that it provides an affordable, low cost way to communicate with present and future customers and to create a “personality” for their stores that sets them apart from other retailers.
There are challenges, of course. Some are finding it difficult to keep generating new and interesting content. The other demands of retailing (such as personnel problems, inventory management and financial concerns) sometimes must take precedence over the task of writing copy for the next email. Others, unfortunately, are not using this excellent promotional medium because they doubt their abilities to create interesting emails regularly. Yet the advantages are so great that every retailer should consider using email marketing.
Some retailers are now sending out weekly emails with special-offer coupon discounts. One doing that is Cole Hardware, a 4-store chain in San Francisco, which features several items each week in a Friday email. Others sometimes prefer to provide editorial content that informs customers how to solve DIY problems or encourages them to undertake DIY projects.
A recent study of online couponing reported that 22.5% of all US households redeemed some coupons in 2011. The study showed coupons boosted incremental sales, influenced brand decisions and encouraged people to spend more. Retailers who were surveyed also noted that online coupons seemed to produce more sales than traditional printed ones. With many newspapers suffering from declining circulation and Yellow Pages being supplanted by the Internet, email marketing is an excellent marketing alternative every retailer should explore and utilize.
The US's Direct Marketing Association estimates that in 2012 every dollar invested in email marketing will generate $39.40 in sales, a powerful argument for the use of email marketing by all retailers.
Some of the savviest chain retailers are now trying to market directly to smartphone owners, which could ultimately impact sales of association members. Studies show that 45% of smartphone users have used a mobile device in a store for a shopping purpose. What these chain retailers are doing is trying to prevent “showrooming”, the practice of consumers checking prices of competing retailers (including online sellers) while in another store.
Internet Retailer, a trade magazine, recently reported how a reporter went into a Home Depot store to see how its employees coped with smartphone shoppers. She downloaded the Home Depot app, which offers instructions for scanning bar codes to access ratings and product reviews. In talking to several store employees, however, she found them rather uninformed about the whole concept of scanning and mobile phone use in stores. It seems apparent that retailers must begin devoting some time to training employees on how to answer and/or react to questions about showrooming and other mobile uses.
Are Your Members’ Sales Being
Affected by Big Online Retailers?
The world's two largest home center chains, Home Depot and Lowe's, sold more than $1 billion of online products last year and both are going after web sales even more aggressively this year.
What is interesting about this data is that online sales aren't being made just in a retailer's own country; they are often made to buyers around the world. Indeed, some web-only retailers emphasize their ability to satisfy customer needs anywhere. This is particularly true for big-ticket items where online pricing, even with shipping costs, can be less than regular store prices. The absence of sales taxes or value-added taxes is also significant.
While Depot's web sales exceeded those of Lowe's last year ($635 million compared to $510 million), Lowe's web sales increased an amazing 70%, while those of Depot were up only 15.27%.
In 2011, Lowe's made a major commitment to increase web sales. It redesigned and improved its web site and saw web sales increase an amazing $210 million, whereas Depot's web sales grew only $39 million in the same period. These and other interesting facts about online sales in the hardware/home center industry are based on information contained in the compilation of the Top 500 online retailers by Internet Retailer magazine.
Your members should be sure to check out web sites of these and other major online hardware retailers to see how they can and should improve their own web sites in order to make more web sales themselves.
A Look at Retailing and
Why Our Members Love It
Probably few people have expressed the fascination of retailing better than some people who spoke at a conference in New York City, U.S., in January 2013. Some of the ideas they expressed are worth sharing with IHA members.
Here are excerpts from points that were made by different individuals, which included some very good advice:
“Retail is so immediate, so passionate, so cutting edge. It changes constantly yet the basics remain amazingly stable.
“What I truly love about retail is being able to express my own creativity to inspire and empower other people. Retail allows a distribution channel for that inspiration.”
What do you wish you had known when you started your retail career that would have made your path easier?
“I wish I’d realized that no one has all the answers – that there is no one way to do things and to trust my own gut sooner.
“MATH! I’ve learned that you can’t just talk your way through retail. Understanding how to analyze sales and marketing numbers is so important. If you aren’t tracking your average sale, your average lead value, your marketing cost of sale, etc., how do you expect to truly grow your business? You must have solid math skills to succeed.
In terms of competing in the retail marketplace, what are some of the unique advantages of small businesses?
“Small business creates the opportunity to wear multiple hats and see the big picture – to be in charge and see a project or concept from idea to execution and evaluation.
“Smaller businesses can show their personalities a lot more. Allowing your authentic personality to shine through allows for true relationship-building with customers. Small businesses have the opportunity to truly humanize a business, and that creates more customer loyalty.
“In small business there is no glass ceiling! If you are lucky enough to work for a small business you’ll see that there is no one that can hold you back or tell you that you can’t do something. It will still take a lot time and effort to reach the top, but you control how successful you become by controlling your attitude and your desire.”
In your experience, what’s the most important thing a small business needs to master in order to succeed today?
“Clarity of purpose. Knowing why you do what you do and working through the strategic decision making process consistently to get there.
“Having the right mindset is the most critical part of business. We have control of one thing only, and that’s our perspective. If you can train your brain to have a positive perspective, then you’ll become solution-driven versus being complaint-driven, and that will attract more opportunity your way.
“Know what your customers really want by listening to them. Listening is the most effective way to communicate. Again, you can’t talk your way through retail. Shhh! You need to listen!”