Hardware All Stars: Alabama and Alaska
Since 2011, HBSDealer has reached out to suppliers, manufacturers, vendors, retailers and home owners in search of high-performing, service-oriented, community-minded hardware stores, lumberyards or farm and ranch dealers worthy of All Star status.
Look who we found in 2016. These businesses have been vetted and approved for All Stardom.
Our annual All Star issue appeared earlier this year, and we’ll continue to recognize our honorees three-at-a-time in our digital products, beginning with these honorees:
Carolina Millwork & Truss
Serving well beyond a 150-mile radius, this full-fledged lumberyard also offers installed sales on insulation and bathroom accessories. That’s a far cry from its humble roots as a truss service, but it’s not hard to understand the basis of its success. On its website is this message to its employees: “As you enter this place of work, please choose to make today a great day. Your co-workers and customers and you yourself will be thankful. Find ways to play.”
Skagway Ace Hardware
Operating out of a 118-year-old gold-rush era building, this one of a kind store serves a town of about 1,000 people – and about a million tourists each summer — with housewares, appliances, furniture, lumber and building supplies. Since joining the Ace Hardware family in 2015, the retailer has undergone an extensive remodel and the influx of brands such as Craftsman, Valspar and Weber.
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Have you seen All Star performance in a retailer? Let us know at [email protected].
All Star Countdown: Calif., Ark., Ariz.
The 2016 class of HBSDealer Hardware All Stars range from family owned convenience hardware stores to multi-unit pro dealers. This diverse group also shares many attributes, including a commitment to customer service and a belief in retail innovation.
The full list of HBSDealer All Stars can be found in our special All Star issue. Our digital countdown continues below with a typically diverse sampling of honorees.
Howard’s True Value
An expert use of planograms, Customized True Blue assortments, and strong sense of customer service. That’s how this 19,000-sq.-ft. store holds its own against three neighboring big-box stores. “People decide where they’re going to shop before they leave the driveway,” said Howard Allen, owner. “Everyone has screwdrivers and hammers, so really connecting with the customer is something we have to impress upon all of our employees.”
John Plyler Home Center
John Plyler has evolved over 69 years into a full-fledged home center, though it began as a small plumbing company. “We now have not only plumbing but electrical, paint, appliances, lumber, doors, windows, and much, much more,” said owner Brandie Killian. A 6,200-sq.-ft. appliance warehouse helps keep the substantial operation running, and a full line of Valspar products makes the paint department an attraction as well.
Bryant’s True Value Home Center
As the second of four True Value stores owned by brothers Paul and Alan Bryant, Bryant’s True Value Home Center takes its cues from their father Jerry’s work ethic: “Do what’s right for the customer, and the rest will take care of itself.” This is surely reflected in the 30,000-sq.-ft. home center’s many 5-star ratings and declarations of customer loyalty on Facebook.
Hardware All Stars: Del., Colo., and D.C.
The most consistent trait of a stand-out store is almost always customer service. But it’s just the beginning of the retailer’s path to All-Star status.
Other factors, seen in HBSDealers 2016 class of Hardware All Stars include a reputation as a community cornerstone, an ability to serve the pro, an instinct for niche-building, a tangible feeling of family values and an ability to adapt, change, invest and grow.
Below are highlights from three honorees.
This highly-rated store gets its ratings for its adherence to traditional independent retail values: an assortment that meets its customers’ needs, and a staff that knows “helpfulness” inside and out. Add highly competitive prices into the mix, plus support for the local community and youth sports, plus a Uhaul rental center and provision of hunting and fishing licenses, and you’ve got a well-rounded retail proposition.
Since its establishment in 1947, this family-owned company has expanded to two stores and four lumberyards and netted the “Best Place to Do Business” honor for 10 years in a row by local paper Fairplay Flume. President Bill Moore was named Lumberman of the Year in 2013 by the Mountain States Lumber & Building Material Dealers Association. Soon, it will also become perhaps one of the only hardware stores with a steampunk display case.
District of Columbia
Logan Hardware doubled its sales after moving to its new location on 14th Street in Metro D.C. The business has embedded itself deep in the neighborhood partnering with local co-ops, including a creamery, churches and local charter schools. Along the way , the store, part of the “A Few Cool Hardware Stores” group, achieved Ace Hardware’s Pinnacle status.