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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Page 85 of 118

September 2017 | HARDWARE RETAILING 81 which make up a significant portion of Root River Hardware's auto business. "Those shops are always looking for the best way to buy consumables. There are always traveling salesmen who sell just that, so you'll have to beat those prices, but you can be very competitive in things like brake cleaner, gasket cleaner, oil and antifreeze," Steien says. His stores provide certain automotive services, such as turning brake drums and rotors in vehicles. The stores also offer to build hydraulic hoses, something Steien believes any hardware business should offer, especially if it serves a rural community like his do. "There's no reason a store can't build hydraulic hoses for farm equipment, and farmers break hoses on their equipment every day," he says. "The trick is finding a need and supplying it. If your area doesn't have a dedicated auto parts dealer, it can be a viable department in the hardware business." Root River Hardware has two locations in Minnesota, with both Chatfield and Preston locations offering auto parts as well as hardware.

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