National Hardware Show to shine brighter light on seasonal

The Seasonal area of the National Hardware Show is in for a boost, according to the show organizers, who point to a growing emphasis on holiday décor and lawn-and-garden-related merchandise around the industry.

The Seasonal area will be expanded to include hundreds of the industry's most innovative products during the May 10 to 12 event in Las Vegas, according to organizers. 

The move is a response to market demand. "Holiday décor is thriving in the marketplace, and the number of hardware retailers carrying holiday décor is increasing every year," said Christina Barnes, general manager of Accents Unlimited, a seasonal products company.

Seasonal has also become an important category for Organize.com, where holiday storage for Christmas trees, wreaths, garlands, lights, ornaments and décor is at its peak in December and January. "Stocking stuffers have always been a key component of our holiday assortment, but we see our customer looking to us for holiday décor, tabletop and entertaining while they shop Organize.com during the holiday season," said Deborah Shearer, Organize.com's VP marketing and merchandising. 

"A New Way to Market" will be the major theme of the 2011 event, which intends to expand on its list of global attendees, not only from traditional retail and wholesale outlets but untraditional channels like grocery, mass, drug, catalog and the Internet -- all representing almost $240 billion in sales revenue. 

Arett Sales, for example, sends a large team of buyers to the National Hardware Show and considers the Seasonal area critical to the growth of its business. The company distributes a wide assortment of Halloween, Christmas and fall harvest products, as well as seasonal lawn and garden products related to home vegetable gardening -- including containers, raised beds, organics and naturals and hydroponics.

"As a distributor, it is our obligation and commitment to our retailer customers that we offer the newest, most innovative and most exciting new products available," said Mike Mallon, VP merchandising and marketing for Arett Sales. "The layout is organized and easy to get around. The new products area, an area that is very important to us, is informative and is always packed with product. Overall, the Hardware Show is among the best show experiences a buyer would want."