Thursday, November 21st, 2013 - Roy Morgan Research

Despite increased competition, average and total visits to hardware behemoth Bunnings are relatively unchanged over the past two years, the latest research from Roy Morgan shows. 

In the September 2013 quarter, around 2 in 3 Australians (14+)—nearly 13 million people—reported buying something at Bunnings in the past year. 

However the number of individual shoppers only tells a part of the story. Around two-thirds of Bunnings’ customers visited (and bought) from the store four or more times during the year—including around 1 in 5 who made at least 13 separate shopping trips. Bunnings receives an average of nearly seven annual visits per customer, for a total of 84.2 million ka-chings at the register.  

Total Number of purchase occasions at each hardware store in the last 12 months

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), Oct 2011 – Sep 2013, Australians 14+ Average per 12 months n= 19,700 Time periods - Rolling quarters

Conversely, around two-thirds of Masters’ customers only go once, twice or three times annually, for an average of around 3.5 visits per customer, and 6.6 million total purchasing instances. Despite this being around half the Bunnings average, the number of visits to Masters is growing, up from under three per customer in 2012. 

Mitre10 still fares better than the new entrant but remains well behind Bunnings, with customers shopping there an average of close to five times a year, for a total of 14.6 million. 

Warren Reid, Group Account Manager – Consumer Products, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“The battle for hardware sales has entered a new era, with Masters Hardware making inroads into the category. However, Bunnings and Mitre10 have largely maintained their total number of customer visits. 

“But the gap between the retailers in terms of the sheer number of purchase visits is only half the story. Masters has yet to develop equivalent loyalty from its customers, where they visit many times in a twelve month period. Customers at Bunnings and Mitre10 visit an average seven and five times respectively per year, compared with around 3.5 at Masters.

“Our research can further examine where this is cross-over between customers to find, for example, whether people who are checking out Masters still feel the need to shop at Bunnings and, using our new Helix Personas profiling tool, how different types of people in different areas shop for hardware and home supplies.

“Helix Personas reveals that Bunnings and Masters attract broadly similar types of customers, and the stores will need to delve further into the research to understand who their customers are, where they live and what they want in a hardware store. It’s a clearer situation for Mitre10, which is more readily distinguished by its higher purchasing incidence among rural, older and lower income customers. Instead, Mitre10 will need to examine its customer bases to determine the potential dollar value of competing for the higher spend, home-buying suburban families now going to Bunnings or Masters."

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Roy Morgan Research

Roy Morgan Research is Australia’s best known and longest established market research and public opinion survey company. Roy Morgan Single Source is thorough, accurate, and provides comprehensive, directly applicable information about current and future customers. It is unique in that it directs all the questions to each individual from a base survey sample of around 55,000 interviews in Australia and 15,000 interviews in New Zealand annually - the largest Single Source databases in the world. The questions asked relate to lifestyle and attitudes, media consumption habits (including TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, cinema, catalogues, pay TV and the Internet), brand and product usage, purchase intentions, retail visitations, service provider preferences, financial information and recreation and leisure activities. This lead product is supported by a nationally networked, consultancy-orientated market research capability.
Shaun Ellis
P: 03 9224 5332


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