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DIY stores and DIY: the Corona winners 2020

8 Jul 2021

DIY stores and DIY: the Corona winners 2020

DIY stores and DIY: the Corona winners 2020

The Corona crisis has left many businesses and industries in dire straits - but not so the DIY stores. In 2020, they have held their ground brilliantly and, thanks to the DIY boom, have brought in record sales. Will the upswing continue this year?

Working from home, in many cases even being on short-time work, closed shops, extremely limited entertainment and travel options - this is what everyday life during Corona has looked like for months. Many consumers took the opportunity to use their suddenly abundant time and savings to beautify their homes and gardens. From April 2020 onwards, people flooded the DIY stores to stock up on materials for their modernisation and renovation projects. After a brief closure in March, DIY stores were allowed to stay open as they were considered relevant to the economy until mid-December last year - and benefited from the DIY boom. According to the German DIY, Construction and Garden Trade Association (BHB) e. V., DIY and garden stores in Germany generated total sales of around €22.1 billion in 2020. Compared to 2019, they recorded a growth of 13.8 per cent (14.1 per cent on an adjusted basis). With an increase of 26.5 per cent, the rise in e-commerce was even higher. Within the assortments, the area of paints/painting accessories proved to be particularly profitable with a plus of 27.4 per cent, followed by garden equipment (plus 26.9 per cent) as well as wood and garden furniture (both plus 24.8 per cent). Despite minor dips in sales during the lockdown phases in March and from mid-December onwards, these did not seriously dampen the excellent results of the exceptional year 2020.

Outlook for 2021: Corona waves and new customer expectations

So how will things look in 2021? For the current year, the BHB expects a decline in sales - mainly due to the repeated lockdowns last winter and in spring, which also affected the DIY stores. In January and February 2021 alone, the retailers recorded a minus of around 50 per cent. It is not yet possible to quantify the impact of the third and possibly even a fourth wave of the pandemic. But some developments promise good prospects for DIY stores and the DIY business. The crisis has further strengthened the cocooning trend. For many people, their own four walls represent a protective fortress that they want to design individually according to their preferences. In addition, many employees will continue working from home in the future at least part-time - and like their workplace to be attractive and individually furnished. Fortunately, according to the BHB's assessment, also the younger generation has discovered home improvement. It offers them the perfect opportunity to be creative and design their own projects. The latest DIY generation is setting new trends that are likely to have a significant impact on the DIY industry with their expectations of ecologically and fairly produced products and sustainable action throughout the entire supply chain, as well as with their preference for high-quality smart home technology. This creates new opportunities for committed retailers and manufacturers.