American home improvement chain The Home Depot is reacting to the change in the competitive landscape and consumer trends by adapting its retail concept. The stores have been given new signage and reorganised to enable customers to find their way around better. Furthermore, the management has invested heavily in improving customer care. The most important change is probably the work the company is putting into making online shopping easier. How successful Home Depot has been in this regard is shown by the increase of more than a billion dollars in revenue from online sales in the last six months. Online purchases accounted for 4.2 billion dollars and nearly 15 per cent of overall sales. In the first quarter of 2020, online sales increased by as much as 80 per cent, due in part to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Home Depot retails a million articles in 18 merchandise categories online. 60 per cent of customers collect their online purchases from the store. The chain also offers free delivery and is working on being able to deliver the products ordered on the same or following day. Delivery and collection options have been expanded as a reaction to Covid-19, while Plexiglass screens have been erected at tills in store.
Last year, Home Depot’s sales totalled 110.2 billion dollars, with a net profit of 11.2 billion dollars. Starting out with three stores over 40 years ago, the company has increased the number of outlets in the USA, Canada and Mexico to 2 239. These each brought in 49.2 million dollars on average. The Home Depot achieved a return of 45.4 per cent on the capital invested last year. Like-for-like sales increased by 3.5 per cent. The company currently employs 400 000 staff.