Study Shows Slight Preference For Lowe’s Over Home Depot

Reuters tells that a “June poll of 1,000 U.S. homeowners by marketing firm Consumer Specialists found that 51 percent of respondents preferred to shop at Lowe’s, compared with 49 percent for industry leader Home Depot.

However, the study determined that Home Depot gets more money from shoppers, with people who prefer Lowe’s spending 10 percent less than shoppers who like Home Depot.”

Apparently, this slight margin of victory for Lowe’s is enough for experts to conclude that customers have “a strong affection” for Lowe’s. Experts quoted in the article also speculated that the lower spending at Lowe’s was due to that chain having fewer stores in wealthier markets.

Whatever. Point is: people like shopping at Lowe’s better. We tend to agree, even though we purchased potting soil at Lowe’s that was infested with insects that killed each and every single one of our many houseplants, and we are still sort of bitter about that.— MEGHANN MARCO

Study finds preference for Lowe’s over Home Depot


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  1. AcilletaM says:

    Apparently, this slight margin of victory for Lowe’s is enough for experts to conclude that customers have “a strong affection” for Lowe’s.

    These must be the same experts that interpret political polls.

  2. Shades of Bush’s 2004 51/49 “mandate”.

  3. Solo says:

    This is not the place to give ousselves a stats 101. But with a survey of 1,000, a difference of 1% can’t be called “strong affection”. It can actually be called “irrelevant”.

    Both are undifferentiated retail outlets: they sell the same thing, exactly the same thing. The layout in each store is similar, with the paint in the middle, the elctric stuff next to it, etc. And they watch over each other’s price and match accordingly, so none has the competitive edge there either.

    Prefering one over the other is kind of like prefering perrier over san pelligrino.

  4. d0x says:

    Lowes reminds me of Walmart, from the outside of the store to the way the inside is designed…which pretty much means I hate it. That could be why so many others like it though.

  5. bradnh says:

    Any half-way (ie 50% +/- 3) credible survey would post its margin of error with results this close. Unless this has a margin of error superior to the world’s most accurate pollsters, the accurate headline would describe this as statistically identical.

  6. jacques says:

    I prefer Menards. Where was that on the survey?

    Although, I’d shop at Lowe’s over HD any day – their stores are brighter and better staffed around me.

  7. Yeah, I work at a polling firm, I’m an analyst… 49% to 51% is a statistical tie, given the margin of error.

  8. mark duffy says:

    It is because of the authoritative and trustworthy voiceover of Gene Hackman.

  9. Drinker Nisti says:

    Hmm… As a relatively new homeowner who has spent way too much time in both store, I prefer Lowe’s: A better selection, ‘tho perhaps a bit more expensive; Merchandise is a bit more organized… Meh– it’s mostly a tossup for standard purchases.

  10. aka Cat says:

    Lowe’s reminds me of Target — clean, neat and brightly lit. Home Depot never manages all three at once.

    Lowe’s also tends to be located near Target in my area. Coincidence?

  11. derek says:

    In terms of products they carry seems like:
    Home Depot=Walmart

    Lowes seems a bit…umm…softer

  12. magic8ball says:

    If 51 percent of respondents preferred to shop at Lowe’s, how is Home Depot the “industry leader”?

  13. AcidReign says:

    …..I like Lowe’s better, too. It’s 4 miles from my house, Home Depot is 20. No-brainer. And the Lowe’s is better organized. At the Home Depot at the Riverchase Galleria, you have to navigate around piles and piles of crates and unstocked merchandise. Yeah, the Home Depot is bigger, and has more stuff, but it’s a desperate last resort.

  14. “I prefer Menards. Where was that on the survey?”

    I love Menards but it’s so thinly-staffed (part of how they keep prices so low!) that I make sure I have my cell so I can call the store and tell the person who answers it where in the store I am and that I need a dude to come explain caulk to me.

    Jumping up and down and waving is far less effective than just calling the store. From inside the store.

  15. Triteon says:

    I’m getting a Target/Lowe’s plaza built just about 1 mile from my house. Love that the Target is going in (more for competition in my area than anything)…but will still drive the 10 miles to Lowe’s– but only when my local hardware store or Ace Hardware doesn’t carry what I need.

  16. Lowe’s is closer. By about 50 miles. So it’s no contest.

    I just wish they would show all their stock on their web site though. They take off everything they don’t want to ship, thinking people are shopping for lowe’s on line. Now, I’m price checking and looking at options. I’m not going to ask you to move that much lumber and insulation for me. jeez.

  17. Big up Ace Hardware, here as well.

    And ‘our’ houseplants died? Again?

  18. LTS! says:

    Well, even though I’ve had my Lowe’s hell story posted on here, and just the other day chose Sears over Lowe’s when I needed a new dryer I would still shop Lowe’s over Home Depot. The Home Depot near me is farther. In addition, I don’t believe they ever clean anything in that store and finally the employees are hopeless. Lowe’s is at least clean and closer and in rare instances the employees are helpful.

    Sadly Ace Hardware is about 45 minutes away and the other local option was pushed out business by Lowe’s even though they had cleanliness, closeness, and their employee’s actually knew something. You would have thought that the prices were bad but in many cases the store was cheaper too. Oh well.

  19. denki says:

    For homeowners, Lowe’s is fine because it presents a bunch of crap homeonwers need. For construction workers, it’s HD. I hate Lowe’s because it caters to goddamn idiots who want to install a new fountain in their livingroom and put chandeliers in the bathroom. It may have better “selection,” but then we are talking consumer-end goods (lighting fixtures, appliances, etc). Yes, they have more lights and washers/dryers and pretty things. But do they have all the couplings I would need if I was running electrical or plumbing, or gas lines? Do they have all the different types of nails/staples I need for framing, roofing, cabinetry, insulation, flooring, electrical, mounting, etc? Hell no. And how about lumber? Or even alternate building materials? Lowe’s is for the weekend hobbyist. And if you aren’t buying decorative items or appliances, HD is a lot cheaper because they buy stock at greater quantity and have higher turnover.

    The same firm should interview construction workers, because most of them would probably laugh their ass off if they were asked if they shopped at Lowe’s. Big ups HD and Ace.

  20. manoyd says:

    Lowe’s keeps most of thier people down to 28 hrs a week, some get 38. Only management gets more, usually 50 to 60 hours. But they are not allowed to post their own hours worked. HR always submits time for the managers at 40 hrs a week. Do you see a Labor issue here? Would you want to work there?