21 Mar Americans Plan to Tackle More High-Ticket Outdoor Home Improvement Projects in 2022
Axiom just released its annual 2022 Home Improvement Outlook Survey. American homeowners will be spending more time and money on outdoor home improvement projects in 2022. Nearly 67% of homeowners say they will spend more time on outdoor home improvement projects this year than in 2021. Six in 10 respondents report they will spend between $1,000 and $5,000 on these projects.
Spring is the time for outdoor tasks; however, this boost on the outside-of-the-house projects is more than seasonal. Since 2020, many Americans have focused on updating the interior of their homes. Now they’re turning their attention to outdoor projects that improve and update their outdoor environments to make them as nice as the inside of their homes. More than 58% of respondents feel they’ve now finished their interior home improvement tasks (after spending 2 years in lockdown.)
The top five outdoor projects they’ll take on this year include: adding new shrubs or trees, building or renovating a deck, adding a fence, expanding or creating new flower and vegetable gardens, and exterior painting. Forty-eight percent of those surveyed said they’ll be shelling out anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000 on outdoor projects. More than 15% expect to spend up to $10,000. Nearly 50% say they’ll pay for the projects in cash.
When asked why they’re planning these outdoor projects for 2022 the top answer focused on wants rather than needs. Forty-one percent of those surveyed said it was “something they wanted” for their home or yard.
What can manufacturers do to make homeowners want your products? Most marketing firms would steer you toward influencer endorsements, social media content, advertising, and the like. I agree these things are important because they create awareness and consideration among homeowners; however, I’d offer up some additional things to consider.
1.) Don’t Lose Focus on Channel Partners – According to all of our surveys completed since 2018, the single most important source of information about new home and garden products is the retailer. Upshot: What are you doing to improve the presence of your products at retail? How are you negotiating end cap displays? How can you improve your packaging to draw the eyes of shoppers? What resources do you offer to train retail staff at store locations? Often these things remain underleveraged because of stringent retailer rules/norms. Our recommendation to clients is to create and implement a retailer-specific channel strategy that focuses on the financial benefit to retailers. This needs to be done in concert with the sales team and the marketing team.
2.) Make Your Messaging is Compelling — When was the last time that you tested your unique selling proposition and features and benefits with Gen X and Millennial consumers AND Gen Xers and Millennials who work at the retail outlets where you’re selling your products? Upshot: Many companies do this when they introduce new products. Our recommendation to clients as a best practice is to test and optimize continually using social media, online surveys, and retailer mystery shops.
3.) Consider Performance Guarantees – Since 1993, we’ve helped to develop several performance guarantees that tie to key features or benefits for our home and garden clients. Upshot: Performance guarantees increase sales and consumer confidence. They increase trial of new products. Don’t let concerns of corporate risk or legal departments deter you from investigating performance guarantees. Many times, there are existing satisfaction guarantees that could cover this. There are a variety of one-time insurance policies that can be used to reduce risk.
For more information on the Axiom 2022 Home Improvement Outlook, download the report here: https://axiomcom.com/2022-outdoor-home-improvement/