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Traffic patterns at home retailers go wobbly


Los Altos, Calif. – After a sustained boom, the home décor channel has seen uneven visit patterns in recent months, according to the Home Improvement & Décor Deep Dive 2022 report from Placer.ai.

On a three-year basis, the sector as whole has seen traffic falling steady since last September (8.6%) and continuing into May of this year (-20.0%). However, certain retailers are beating the trend.

The leader of the pack is Home Goods, with foot traffic share at 32.8% in Q1 2022, up from 25.8% in the same period of 2019.

Since the pre-pandemic period, At Home has seen the biggest advance in foot traffic share, which was at 11.0% in the recent Q1, up from 8.55 in Q1 2019.

Bed Bath & Beyond has seen the greatest contraction in foot traffic share, which stood at 18.2% in Q1 2022, down from 28.6% in Q1 2019.

“Meanwhile, home improvement foot traffic remains close to 2019 levels as people shift their spending toward essential expenditures such as fixing a leaky roof or keeping the yard in order,” Placer.ai reported. “The success on the home improvement front is particularly noteworthy considering the comparisons are coming to the sector’s peak season – even in the face of inflation and rising gas prices.”

The location data analytics firm warned that rising inflation coupled with the downward trend in home ownership rates, which dropped in 2021 for the first time in five years, will have implications for home improvement retailers as well.

“Our data shows that, as homeownership rates decline, renters are now making up a key part of home improvement shoppers,” the white paper advised. “If housing trends persist, this may re-shape the home improvement world, as renters are less likely to focus on big-ticket renovations.”

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