Home Improvement Spotlights Housewares

The 2019 National Hardware Show in Las Vegas (May 7-9) marks the 14th year for HomeWorld Business as the show’s official housewares publication. The partnership reflects the commitment by the show to keep housewares in the home improvement retailing spotlight.

Home improvement retailers big and small recognize housewares as a traffic-drawing complement to traditional hardware and building products for today’s DIY lifestyles. And personal service has helped strengthen the channel’s brick-and-mortar foundation, even as operators work to advance e-commerce operations.

With that, big-box home centers and local hardware stores present a potent growth opportunity for housewares.

Raising Its Game

National home centers have expanded housewares programs to underscore the segment’s appeal to an expanded shopper demographic profile. Lowe’s for years has touted an expansive housewares selection geared toward women. Home Depot, historically more promotional in housewares, has raised its everyday game in the category with an upscale online program that could presage an in-store rollout.

The big hardware co-ops, meanwhile, have helped sustain independently owned stores, many of which for generations have stocked plenty of housewares— and not just such hardware-oriented categories as cleaning, storage and comfort— for loyal neighborhood clientele.

Progressive Moves

Local hardware stores, while devoted to traditional service values, can be among the most progressive retailers.

Woods Hardware, last year’s National Hardware Show Reimagine Retail award winner with several stores in the Cincinnati area, is implementing a 3D e-commerce experience that lets customers walk “virtually” through its store aisles, click on items and have them delivered the same day.

Ace’s acquisition of The Grommet, a growing online platform for unique lifestyle solutions, has further stoked the evolution of the neighborhood hardware store into a resource for omnichannel innovation beyond traditional hardware products.

The National Hardware Show recharged its commitment to housewares by creating the Homewares Show subdivision in 2007, then teaming with HomeWorld Business a year later to debut the Homewares Awards for top housewares innovations at the show.

Fertile Ground

HomeWorld’s recognition of the home improvement market as a fertile housewares ground extends beyond its National Hardware Show partnership.

HomeWorld Business for the third year is the housewares media sponsor of the Home Improvement eRetailer Summit, which connects home improvement vendors, distributors, e-tailers, and service providers to help optimize the channel’s e-commerce potential. The 4th annual Home Improvement eRetailer Summit is set for November 6-8 in Chicago

Home centers and hardware stores already feature housewares segments central to today’s desired lifestyle experiences— from smart home to outdoor living to home environment to organization to cleaning.

A wider housewares range is primed to command an even brighter spotlight in the home improvement market.