An article in the Wall Street Journal reinforced the notions that many shoppers have always held about the nation’s leading home-improvement retailers: one caters to women, and the other prefers a gender neutral atmosphere.
Lowe’s ongoing effort to appear female friendly recently including lowering the stores’ 16-ft. perimeter shelving and 12-ft. fixtures in the aisles, company VP Melissa Birdsong told the WSJ in a Sept. 6 interview. In some areas, the racks are as low as 4.5 ft.
“What we heard from customers, mostly women, is that [higher racks were] very intimidating,” Birdsong said.
In contrast, Home Depot is staying true to its original DIY format. Company spokeswoman Jean Niemi told the WSJ that the Atlanta retailer’s store “is first and foremost a working warehouse.” Differentiating based on gender isn’t in the company playbook, she said, adding: “We don’t look at it like men versus women.”