How Project Planners connect with brands HERO

How do project planners connect with home improvement brands?

With­in the past year, much has changed for the home indus­try. In March, the Home Improve­ment Research Insti­tute (HIRI) report­ed unprece­dent­ed shifts in home improve­ment trends as a result of the COVID-19 pan­dem­ic. We’ve also seen the econ­o­my and hous­ing mar­ket improve as vac­cines become more wide­ly avail­able in the Unit­ed States.

But as nor­mal­cy returns and con­sumers begin to spend more, how are they approach­ing home improve­ment project plan­ning, and how do prod­ucts and brands fit into the pic­ture? Thanks to the Home Improve­ment Con­sumer Project Plan­ning sur­vey, we have some insight.

Every quar­ter since 2012, HIRI has sur­veyed approx­i­mate­ly 3,000 home­own­ers about their plans for home improve­ment in the com­ing months. The results for the first quar­ter of 2021, gath­ered Jan­u­ary 7 – 13, pro­vide cru­cial insight into how project plan­ners feel about search­ing for and choos­ing products.

Here are some key takeaways.

  • Despite what feels like an enor­mous dig­i­tal lifestyle shift, gath­er­ing rec­om­men­da­tions from friends and fam­i­ly and shop­ping in per­son remain the top-ranked sources for find­ing home prod­uct information.
  • But online research is still a rel­e­vant fac­tor, as social media, retail­er web­sites, review web­sites and man­u­fac­tur­er web­sites each ranked as impor­tant for 20% to 30% of sur­vey respon­dents. In fact, only 18.7% of respon­dents said they do not research prod­ucts online before going to the store. Regard­less of the method for online research, it is clear that most project plan­ners are like­ly to use the inter­net in some capac­i­ty to gath­er home prod­uct information.
  • Inter­est­ing­ly, regard­less of whether shop­ping in per­son or online, respon­dents report­ed that prod­uct place­ment does not have a sig­nif­i­cant influ­ence on their pur­chas­ing deci­sions. This means that shop­pers do not believe they buy prod­ucts due to their promi­nent dis­play loca­tion or high-rank­ing posi­tion in online search results.
  • What are the fac­tors that most heav­i­ly influ­ence con­sumer prod­uct pur­chas­ing deci­sions? These include pri­or use, aes­thet­ics and avail­abil­i­ty. Sur­vey respon­dents ranked hav­ing used the prod­uct before, lik­ing the way it looks and being in stock as the three most impor­tant fac­tors when choos­ing a home improve­ment brand. Online rat­ings and reviews fol­lowed as a close fourth, and rec­om­men­da­tions from friends and fam­i­ly ranked fifth.
  • Even as we begin to recov­er from the most sig­nif­i­cant impacts of the COVID-19 pan­dem­ic, it comes as no sur­prise that buy­ers place a high degree of impor­tance on prod­ucts that pro­mote a healthy home. Amer­i­can-made prod­ucts and those that will make life eas­i­er as con­sumers age are also crit­i­cal to respondents.
Project Planners Product Research

For more in-depth data and insights about con­sumer pur­chas­ing deci­sions in Q1 2021 and beyond, join HIRI today.

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