Traditional brick and mortar stores like Nordstrom and Macy’s are floundering from the “Amazon Effect.” Sales are down, and the future looks bleak for the old retail giants that have controlled the buying habits of consumers for more than 50 years. There’s a new retail hero on the scene, and that company proved that having a physical store is old school and tired. Amazon is dominating the retail market these days, and that not going to stop anytime soon. Amazon has crossed over into markets that were immune to online shopping ten years ago, and their market approach has taught the old retail establishment that it’s time to reinvent yourself or get out of the business.
But there are a couple of brick and mortar stores that are keeping their heads above water. Home Depot and Lowe’s have managed to show sales increases of a least 4 percent for eight straight quarters. That may not sound like much, but in this retail environment, that’s commendable and investable, according to an article published by businessinsider.com. Home Depot and Lowes are riding on the coattails of a booming real estate market and remodeling trend. Even Amazon’s quick speed and competitive prices can’t keep consumers away from these two DIY stores that sell everything from paving stones to a kitchen makeover. Consumers still want to browse the aisles to find the right paint color for a bathroom, a new dishwasher or a tool that will help them pull weeds faster. Home Depot believes that online stores only compete with them on 25 percent of the items they sell, and that has been the carrot they needed to keep the people coming.
The words, “Home improvement needs and Amazon” don’t work in the same sentence right now. Only 11 percent of shoppers that recently participated in a survey said they would buy home improvement items online. Thirty-six percent of those consumers said they would rather go to Home Depot, and 21 percent planned to shop at Lowe’s.
The home improvement market still belongs to the brick and mortar stores right now, but Amazon is a fierce competitor and wants to increase its market share in the home improvement category. Some analyst say Home Depot and Lowe’s have to stay at least two steps ahead of Amazon if they want to survive.