While it’s easy and convenient to shop at places like Home Depot and Lowe’s – we cannot forget about our very valuable “local” hardware stores either.
Big Box Hardware vs. Local Hardware stores
- Convenience (both hours and locations – as well as “credit.”)
- Selection – they have large footprints and a wide array of products that go beyond general hardware.
- Price – Volume often allows big box stores to sell most products cheaper.
However, what the local store can do – that oddly the big box stores don’t do is “specialize.”
Local stores have a better selection of hard to find items
We recently wanted to find replacement bolts for our lawn tractor.
Off to “HD” we went.
But they didn’t have what we were looking for.
Another customer told us about Post Hardware, and the great array of “fasteners” they kept in stock. So we went and checked it out.
Indeed they did!
A vastly greater overall selection of nuts, bolts, screws of all shapes and sizes.
And they did “sell” the part we were looking for. Hooray! (Only problem is that they were out of stock! Boo!) But apparently they have a great inventory re-supply system and my bolt should be in stock now. We’ll check back to make sure.
Local hardware stores should be supported
We’d be hard-pressed to make places like Post Hardware (Post Ace Hardware, sorry) our ONLY place to shop (for economic and geographical reasons). That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t swing by regularly to show our support.
No matter where you live – it’s important to patronize places like this frequently. And if possible – build a relationship with them.
Even if they are a bit pricier up-front – it’s very possible that customers can be rewarded in other ways the “big box” stores can never do.
Such as more helpful tips and information. Or “going that extra mile” for their customers.
There is much less turnaround at local stores, thus – you have the ability to build a camaraderie with the employees (often owner-operated). That is really a priceless relationship when you think big-picture.
While we’re not truly local to Post Hardware, we will still make a point to stop by when we are in the area and have time (or if they’re open – another thing against the locals – their hours cannot compete with the big-box guys!)
Where do you prefer to shop? And why?