How to Make Your Hardware Store and App User Friendly

Construction & Contractors Blog

Owning and operating a hardware store is one thing. Keeping an updated app for your hardware store is entirely another. So, how do you get these things to mesh and work to the benefit of your customers? It requires a little extra work, but you will find that it is so worth it.

Build a Store Inventory-Integrated App

Nothing frustrates a customer more than visiting your store and finding out that you are out of the one thing they desperately need. If you construct an app wherein every item in your store is inventoried in real time and/or integrated with your store's inventory tracking system, consumers will know right away if your store does not carry or have what they need. If your app also allows them to "buy online and pick up in store" like the big stores do, then your customers only have to pick up what they purchased and not have to search for the items when they come into your store.

Incorporate Locations of Items and Update Regularly

Some of the big box stores now offer store locations for every item they sell. Customers do not have to roam about looking for things and/or get frustrated because they cannot find a store associate to show them where something is located. Your app can show a floor layout of your hardware store and then give an exact location for plumbing elbows or j-hook screws. Just be sure to update any moves of various items if you change their location or you change your store's floor plan.

Hardware Store Layouts That Make Sense

Usually, hardware stores have layouts that make sense. Plumbing is close to ventilation because both circulate an element needed in your home. Lawn and garden are on the other side of the store because they are outside implements instead of inside ones. Aisles of fasteners are next to aisles of hand tools and power tools should be next to the hand tools. When your hardware store is laid out just like a methodical tool shop, customers can find what they need faster and easier and are more likely to return to buy other things.

Wide Aisles for Lumber Carts

If your hardware store also sells lumber to construction contractors and the DIY homeowners, make sure your aisles are nice and wide. Nobody wants to push a lumber cart through aisles that are barely wide enough for a single cart. Too many products get damaged this way and it becomes too frustrating for customers to shop your store. Make sure the aisles are a lumber cart and a shopping cart wide, at least.

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