3 R’s
Farm & Home fine tuning during 2012
By Mark Sherry
Mark Sherry photo
Lisa Lane of Farm & Home’s Pet Department in Chilton scoops a fish out of the new tank system at the store.

At Farm & Home in Chilton, people can buy routers, rakes and ripsaws, not to mention thousands of other items starting with just about every letter in the alphabet.

But routers, rakes and ripsaws are not the “three R’s” which Farm & Home owners Kim McKeen and Dwight Bloohm will be focusing on during 2012. They said the year ahead will be a time to review, revise and replace.

“Farm & Home is all you need under one roof,” McKeen said, but that does not happen by accident. The owners and employees must constantly assess what sells well, what is not selling well and what they can do better to continue to make the store at 519 N. Madison St. (STH 32/57) a shopping destination for people from throughout the area.

To that end, it is good to have a partner like Do It Best, the national cooperative which has over 65,000 items available to Farm & Home and its customers. Farm & Home made the switch to Do It Best several years ago, and McKeen said, “They’re probably the best we’ve ever had in working with a coop.”

Finger on American’s pulse

Do It Best assists in keeping its finger on the pulse of America’s shopping trends. “The trends and markets have changed,” McKeen said. Among the factors which have contributed to changing trends are the plethora of home improvement TV programs, an economy which has more people doing face lifts to their homes rather than building new ones, and the home improvement industry’s willingness to give consumers a lot more choices in all areas.

On that latter point, McKeen used the example of doorknobs. Thirty years ago a store might carry a choice of two doorknobs. These days a store might have a display with a dozen choices, and dozens more are available to the consumer with a click of a computer mouse.

That is a good reminder that if Farm & Home customers do not see what they are looking for in the store, just ask. Farm & Home employees can order anything Do It Best has to offer and it will be in Chilton in a couple days.

To make sure the store does indeed

Turn to FARM & HOME/page 40 A