Eight great retail ideas from Sullivan Hardware & Garden


Sullivan serves northern Indianapolis and beyond.


Idea No. 1: Retro Soda Pop


Idea No. 2: Display your family photos.


Idea No. 3: Be a destination for creativity.


Idea No. 4: Use signage effectively.


Idea No. 5: Create a visually stimulating centerpiece.


Idea No. 6: Try a store-within-a-store approach.


Idea No. 7: Sell grass seed by the barrel.


Idea No. 8: Be king of something — for instance, lawn and garden.

Sullivan Hardware & Garden in Indianapolis might be the most toured hardware store in the country, seeing how the store has been hosting busloads of Do it Best members twice a year for years. 

Sullivan, a former board member of Do it Best, has a 12,000-sq.-ft. store, a 10,000-sq.-ft. greenhouse, a solid hardware store offering, and a dominance in lawn and garden.

“I tell people when they come into the store, don’t look at the trinkets,” Sullivan told HCN during a recent tour. “Look at how the store dominates a category. You have to be the king in something. That’s what we tell people, especially in a large market.”

Sullivan wears the unofficial crown of lawn and garden for north Indianapolis. He regularly appears on local television with WTHR Channel 13 as the resident expert in plants and home and garden. (On a recent show, he walked viewers through the relative benefits of perennials and annuals.)

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