Hardware Retailing

SEP 2017

Hardware Retailing magazine is the pre-eminent how-to management magazine for small business owners and managers in the home improvement retailing industry.

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HARDWARE RETAILING | September 2017 80 Auto "We didn't want to get that deep into paint," he says. "We saw what the former hardware stores were doing in paint, and that overhead really hurt them. We try to focus on the forgotten items that people might need if they've gotten paint elsewhere but come home and realize they don't have something they need, like paint rollers." Similar to Summerland Hardware and its marine department, Root River Hardware must make do with small spaces in its stores. This means educating employees and having proactive service for customers, since there's less likelihood that a customer will be able to find the items they are looking for without assistance. Another need fulfilled by Root River Hardware's presence is camping and RV. In addition to the auto supplies needed to maintain an RV, a large number of local campgrounds and RV parks rely on his two stores for basic necessities, like camping gear or electrical adaptors and sewer hoses. Businesses serving an area with large campgrounds and outdoor attractions would benefit from an expanded auto department to draw in customers looking to maintain those vehicles as well. Stock the Shops To Steien, the opportunity to expand his business came out of a newly formed need for local hardware stores. For hardware retailers looking to expand their automotive offerings, he suggests exploring their surrounding markets. While teaming up with a franchise like NAPA Auto Parts might not be the right path for every business, it has worked well for Root River Hardware. Even without a franchise attachment, Steien says many auto parts and supplies can be found through hardware distributors for similar or lower costs than through auto parts distributors. One way to find a niche in the auto supply market is to work with local repair shops and mechanics, THE COMPANY INC. ® Thousands of styles and finishes. Everything you need, all in one place. www.jeskecompany.com 800.677.3383 Delivering quality, service and reliability for almost 60 years. Jeske's dedicated account management team delivers the service you deserve. Fast, efficient keying services save you time and money. Quick, same-day shipping from multiple distribution centers gets you what you need, when you need it.

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