When it comes to fixing things around the house, women are taking matters into their own hands. Many are confident they can “do-it-herself” with a little help from their favorite DIY home improvement programs on cable television. Fresh ideas also come from YouTube videos that show every step of the project. These confident DIYers know their way around the local hardware store. They aren’t afraid to corner a salesperson in a home center to get the low-down on floor tiles or the latest smart-technology thermostat. DIYers are always on the lookout for the tool that isn’t in their toolbox and can’t wait to own the new power tool everyone is raving about online.
There are compelling reasons why an increasing number of women have become avid DIYers. Some are tacking home repair projects traditionally considered to be men’s work. Due to a radical shift in demographics, women are earning more money and staying single longer than in previous years. According to the Joint Center for Housing Studies, a record number of women are becoming first-time home buyers. Other facts of note:
- More than one in five home buyers is a single woman
- Twice as many unmarried women are buying homes than single men
- Single women comprise more than one-third of the growth in real estate ownership since 1994
These single women represent a cross-spectrum of home buyers and are not specific to age or race. Some are divorced, separated, never married, with or without children, live alone, or with friends or partners. They are homeowners by choice. A home is something they have always wanted to purchase for both practical and emotional reasons. The timing may be due to the need for more or less living space, and a desire to be closer to family or a job. Whatever the reason, these women also want to save money on simple repairs and leave bigger projects to contractors.
They depend on the proper tools to maintain their homes and keep them in good condition. Twenty-one percent of women surveyed own at least five power tools. This number is a significant increase from ten years ago. Even more impressive, 12 percent of women use power tools for every household project they work on independently. Nearly 50 percent of DIYers are female and want their homes to reflect their unique style and personal tastes.
How You Can Sell More Power Tools
Women want to be inspired. They prefer to shop at businesses that can give them creative ideas for their projects. Customers want to feel confident that the items they purchase are a good investment. Offer customers an opportunity to interact with the power tools, or demonstrate how the product works. Educating female DIYers about the benefits of the product is the best thing you can do to build ongoing relationships that can result in future business.
Sell the Experience
Do more than sell power tools—sell the experience. Your sales staff is the glue that connects the product to the customer. Be sure your team can speak knowledgeably about the product and knows how it operates. Don’t automatically assume the customer knows little about tools. Let her take the lead in the initial conversation, listen carefully, and then take it from there. For women, the experience associated with buying the tool will help close the sale and enable you to gauge customer satisfaction. Studies indicate quality, values, and experience are more important than price. People are willing to spend more on things they enjoy and that give them satisfaction. This list includes power tools they use for home improvement projects.
Hold an Event
Spread the word. Promote your store online and in-store by inviting female DIYers to attend a ladies night event. Offer them an opportunity to learn more about using power tools and demonstrate how to complete a basic project. Ask a woman who works in the construction industry to lead the session. Hold a raffle during the event to create excitement and give someone a chance to win a free power tool. Don’t forget to serve refreshments.
Help Customers Equip Their Toolbox
Beginning DIYers may need help building their toolbox. Recommend that they start with a basic toolbox that is lightweight and has a removable top tray for storage. Provide customers with a list to shop in your store—offer assistance to help collect the items. The ideal toolbox should have a range of products. To keep costs in check, the customer can pick up one or two things every time they visit the store. When selecting tools, customers should feel comfortable; they can use them safely.
In conclusion, if you want more women to shop in your tool department, you may need to take a fresh approach. Independent retailers already know how to build rapport with customers and market to them in personal ways. Consider using a combination of traditional and digital advertising geared towards women to stand out from the crowd and increase sales.