Hardware Retailing

FEB 2019

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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HARDWARE RETAILING | February 2019 64 Grills and Special Cookers One thing homeowners will think about when it comes to creating an outdoor space is the type of cooking source to choose. But grills are not one-size-fits-all. Today's homeowner has a variety of products to choose from. Some manufacturers are creating high-end grills that allow users to switch between, depending on how they want to cook their food. One of the fastest-growing segments of outdoor living is specialty grills, according to the market research firm The Freedonia Group. These include pellet grills, kamado grills and smokers, which all allow the chef to focus on different ways to add distinct flavors to their food. When a customer hires Erickson's company to build a new outdoor kitchen, they may have a basic space that was created when the house was built that they want to gut and make their own. "Most of our customers want to remove the previous work a builder has done to create more space and to meet their specific design preferences," Erickson says. "I've found those that move to Florida from the Midwest or east coast are more likely to want an outdoor kitchen because they had one back home." As more homeowners are finding ways to prepare meals outside, outdoor kitchens will include built-in gas grills connected to a home's natural gas line. People who want an outdoor kitchen but aren't as interested in grilling, might install the same type of range outdoors as they use indoors. As outdoor living remains a popular project for homeowners, establishing a well-rounded cooking area is at the top of many remodelers' lists. Homeowners may want a standard grill, a specialty cooktop (above) or a combination of both. In Your Store To ensure customers continue shopping at your operation for their grilling needs, be sure your employees can explain the different grill options and how to cook with them. • Establish a team of grilling experts and consider focusing a high-profile area of your store on grills and smokers. • When the weather is nice, take it outside and host cooking demos for customers. Photo courtesy of NatureKast

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