NPD: Consumer Lifestyles Driving Housewares Sales Growth

The lifestyle of consumers is driving their home products purchase decisions, according to The NPD Group’s Retail Tracking Service, which noted that newness and innovation each are factoring less in the types of home goods purchased.

NPD noted that shoppers between the ages of 25 and 34 contributed 61% of small appliance dollar sales gains in 2015. Older generations, specifically consumers 55 and up, accounted for 61% of the dollar gains in non-electric housewares categories last year, and 66% of the home textiles growth.

“The two largest generations are entering new life stages, and the focus they both have on the basics of their new lifestyles is having a tangible effect on the home industry,” said Lora Morsovillo, president of NPD’s home division. “The Millennials are starting homes of their own and Boomers are creating a new type of home for themselves as they become empty-nesters and enter retirement.”

NPD said sales of small appliances, non-electric housewares, and home textiles each grew 2% in 2015, compared to 2014, reaching a combined total of $50.9 billion. Within each of these industries, the categories that contributed the most dollar growth demonstrated the consumer emphasis on fundamental needs, rather than the aspirational trend of recent years, NPD officials said.

“When it comes to the essentials, personal health and wellness are high on the list and they apply to each of the home categories that drove the most growth in 2015, from cooking and cleaning to sleeping and hydrating on-the-go,” added Morsovillo. “Millennials, as a group, have a higher level of awareness into their personal well-being than recent generations, and Boomers are becoming more mindful as they age. At this moment, in order to appeal to these key consumer segments, marketers of home-related products need to keep the basics in mind.”

In looking at December 2015 sales, NPD reported that products with the largest percentage growth year-over-year were hand/stick vacuums (+20%), oral care appliances (+11%) and mixers (+10%). Within non-electric housewares categories, portable beverageware had the biggest year-over-year growth in December, up 30%.