B&Q focuses on attracting women into its stores

B&Q is attempting to ‘feminise’ its stores as part of a nationwide campaign to appeal to female consumers.

The DIY chain said it was training 800 employees to be design advisers and more than a third of B&Q’s 330 UK stores have already undergone a facelift.

Nathan Clements, director of organisation development at B&Q, said the move was to “grow and recognise feminisation” within the home improvement market. Research showed that women controlled up to 85% of consumer goods spending and made more than 80% of the purchasing decisions in homes, he said.

Clements said it was a big challenge to turn all the firm’s stores, originally designed to have a masculine feel, into a more attractive offering for female consumers.

“We have made significant progress in ensuring stores are easier to navigate, more decorative and have dedicated zones for lighting, tiling, bathrooms and kitchens,” he said. “B&Q is training 800 employees to advise on such things as how to hang wallpaper or how to style a room. We are also trialling a handy­man service.”

While B&Q has a 50/50 gender employment split across the business, there is only one female board member. But Clements said the company had doubled the number of women at the management level below the board.

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