The Farnsworth Group's Jim Robisch delivered 68 slides' worth of information about pro contractors' use technology when he spoke to Do it Best members at their fall trade trade show. He can send you all the details, but for today let's focus on findings that show contractors are increasingly less shy about buying goods off the Internet.
The table below shows lumberyards and specialty dealers remain comfortably ahead of big boxes and way ahead of the Internet when pros buy building products. And lumberyards are even further ahead in the top supplier rankings, while specialty wholesalers and distributors dominate in serving specialty contractors (i.e., home improvement firms that focus on replacing roofs, siding, windows, etc.)
On the other hand, while its share doesn't top 11% of any pro group and isn't any group's preferred way to shop, Internet-based buying definitely is taking place. In fact, 54% of builders putting up more than 20 homes a year say they go online at least twice a week. The same is true for 49% of smaller builders, 36% of specialty contractors, and 35% of general remodelers.
Here are the numbers: