Once vaccines began rolling out earlier this year, many of us made some logical guesses on how that would impact DIY activity and home improvement shopping behavior. By having a vaccine, consumers would feel confident resuming events they were staying away from or were not available for more than a year. It would also see logical that as consumers became vaccinated that they would feel comfortable going in-store and would use online suppliers less.
Thus far, that has not been the case. When it comes to DIY project activity we see that 73% of Vaccinated Gen Yers and 73% of Non-Vaccinated Gen Yers have completed a project in the past few weeks. It’s only when we look at Gen Xers and Boomers that we see only a slight decrease in activity among Vaccinated DIYers.
Planned DIY Activity
When looking at DIYers that are planning to start a project in the coming weeks, we see even more commonality between Vaccinated and Non-Vaccinated DIYers. 74% of Vaccinated and 74% of Non-Vaccinated DIYers are planning to start a project in coming weeks. This sameness is true across generations. In fact, 90% of Vaccinated Gen Yers are planning a project compared to 85% of Non-Vaccinated Gen Yers. Again, we see that what we expected may happen has not proven to be the case.
So what about channel behavior? Surely, those that are vaccinated are going in-store much more than those that aren’t vaccinated because they now feel safer shopping and buying in person. This assumption has so far proven to be the biggest surprise. The data suggests that vaccinated DIYers are more likely to purchase online than non-vaccinated. Vaccinated DIYers are buying Home Improvement products only anywhere from 7% to 18% more than Non-Vaccinated DIYers. This holds true across all generations. While Booomer continue to be more in-store orientated than younger generations, it’s important to note Vaccinated Boomers are buying online 12%-17% more than Non-Vaccinated Boomers.
Many common assumptions have yet to be realized. Vaccinations have not slowed the DIY activity, and in fact, Vaccinated DIYers seem equally or in some case, more likely to do DIY projects particularly through online purchases. This is proven when we look at home improvement retail sales data that is higher year-to-date over last year.
Many manufacturers and suppliers may make the mistake of believing their intuition rather than making data-based decisions. Be sure you’re taking time to study your customer and your specific product market to understand what assumptions may hold true and which are proven to be wrong. It may result in missed opportunities.
To better understand your customer, brand, product or market, schedule time to speak with us about our custom research approach that will provide you detailed insights specific to your business.