Hardware Retailing

SEP 2017

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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Page 26 of 118

22 HARDWARE RETAILING | September 2017 22 Trends Your retail operation may stock the supplies that traveling vacationers need, but have you thought about marketing specific products to recreational vehicle owners? If your business is located near one or more of the thousands of campgrounds in North America, then you may benefit from better understanding the customers who are passing through your area in their RVs. Most of the 9 million RV owners in the U.S. take short trips three or more times every year, according to the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association. The association also reports that RV owners tend to range in age from 35 to 54, which means many of them are likely established in careers and have families they take with them on their travels. These vacationers could regularly turn to your business for the supplies they need while traveling, such as small propane tanks and charcoal for grills, motor oil for their RVs and camp chairs for gathering around the fire pit, as well as small impulse items you sell at your checkout counter, like car chargers for cellphones and snack foods. Blaze Trails With Your Customers on the Road Applied to Retail Attracting travelers to your store might require additional targeted marketing. Ask local campgrounds if you can post flyers near camping sites or advertise in campground maps. If you're not familiar with the busy seasons for the campgrounds near your business, ask for local statistics from tourism bureaus or chambers of commerce. Stay in touch with those organizations to learn when special events may attract extra campers. Then, make your business traveler-friendly during those busy weeks or seasons by merchandising RV and camping products in easy-to-spot sections of your store. Create supply checklists for RV owners and post them in store windows or at the cash register. Doing so might go beyond attracting RV owners who need a specific item or two by reminding them of other supplies they want or forgot. To read more about selling products to RV owners, turn to Page 70. 22 HARDWARE RETAILING | September 2017 A Closer Look at RV Owners RV owners. of most American The age range 35-54 recreational vehicles. U.S. households own More than 9 MILLION Source: Recreation Vehicle Industry Association $50 BILLION The RV industry has a domestic economic impact. 16,000 campgrounds nationwide. The U.S. has more than 90 PERCENT More than of RV owners take three or more short vacations per year.

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