Monday, November 9th, 2015

It’s official: over half (50.4%) of the Australian population 14+ (9.8 million people) now shop at Bunnings in an average four weeks, the latest findings from Roy Morgan Research show  — up from 46.7% just 12 months ago. This represents an increase of almost 800,000 shoppers per four-week period, testament to the seemingly unstoppable Bunnings juggernaut.

While Bunnings’ continued growth can only be described as stratospheric, most of its smaller competitors also saw increases in customer traffic. Amid recent media speculation that Woolworths might offload its struggling hardware chain Masters Home Improvement, Masters actually gained customers — with 7.7% of the population now shopping there per average four-week period (up on 6.3% 12 months ago).

Mitre 10 (9.4%, up from 9.3%) and Home Hardware (2.9%, up from 2.8%) showed more modest growth year on year, while the proportion of Australians shopping at True Value Hardware dipped from 1.0% to 0.7%.

Proportion of Aussies who shop at hardware stores in an average 4 weeks, 2014 vs 2015


Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), July 2013–June 2014 (n=19,294) and July 2014– June 2015 (n=19,346).

With almost 10 million people making at least one purchase there in an average four weeks, Bunnings’ lead over its rivals currently appears to be insuperable. But its smaller rivals have the nominal edge in one respect: all attract proportionally more customers interested in gardening than Bunnings.

Nearly eight of every 10 True Value customers (79.3%) work in the garden in an average three months, with 26.6% being veritable green thumbs (getting out in the garden 16+ times per three months). More than three-quarters of Home Hardware and Mitre 10’s customers (76.4% and 75.8% respectively) work in the garden, ahead of 72.7% of Masters Home Improvement shoppers and, bringing up the rear, 71.3% of Bunnings shoppers.

Proportion of customers who work in the garden


Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), July 2014 – June 2015 (n=12,166).

Andrew Price, General Manager – Consumer Products, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“With more than 50% of the population passing through its check-outs in an average four weeks, Bunnings reigns supreme over the national hardware scene. Even though most of the smaller chains also gained customers over the last 12 months, they stand little chance of catching up with the Big Green Box any time soon.(In fact, one has to wonder whether hardware retail in Australia is close to hitting saturation point, given Bunnings’ massive numbers.)

“However, our data indicates that the smaller chains count higher proportions of people interested in gardening among their customer bases. Maintaining and building on this important segment could be one way of ensuring a future in this unbalanced market, rather than trying to challenge Bunnings’ generalised ‘lowest prices’ approach.

“Of course, if we’re talking cold, hard customer volume, the combined number of gardening customers who shop at Masters, True Value, Home Hardware and Mitre 10 is still less than 50% of Bunnings’ gardening customers. But it seems obvious that targeting shoppers with specific interests is a more viable tactic for these smaller players than trying to please everybody all of the time.”

View this release in full on our website.

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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.
Samantha Wilson
P: (03) 9224 5268


hardware, bunnings, masters, mitre 10, home hardware, true value hardware, retail, gardening




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