Smart Home Product Buyer Preference: DIY vs. Pro Installation

Somewhat surprisingly, smart home product buyers that prefer DIY are more likely to be Boomers than Gen-Xers or Millennials, according to this study.

Security companies are no longer competing with only each other. Pros now face competition from e-commerce sites, search engines and start-ups offering DIY security solutions.

Research from Kwikset’s latest audience segmentation study breaks down smart home product buyers by generation to help integrators and dealers get a better grasp of who they are selling to.

Somewhat surprisingly, Boomers (37%) eked past Millennials (35%) when it comes to the percentage of smart home product buyers that prefer the DIY route. Gen-X came in third with 28%.

Less of a surprise, Boomers make up the largest segment of buyers that prefer professional installation. Gen-X came in second with 28% followed by Millennials at 27%.

How can this information assist security pros? Knowing exactly who your audience is can help you better target your customers and prospects. Do you want to focus most of your marketing to Boomers because they already prefer professional installation, or do you want to target Millennials and educate them about why they should go the professional route versus DIY?

Check out some more findings from the study in the chart below.

Audience Segmentation

Kwikset’s audience segmentation study was taken by 1098 people. It also broke down respondents into the following buyer groups (descriptions by Kwikset):

Tech Enthusiasts – 17% of respondents

The Tech Enthusiast is on the go. Living in a fast-paced world with his family, he owns several properties, which is why he’s looking for durable, tech-savvy locks to make life more connected. Before buying a lock, the Tech Enthusiast spends a  lot of time researching to make sure he’s getting a product that’s long-lasting and durable. It’s also really important that locks bring convenience to his life, so they should be easy to install, too.

Discerning Home Curators – 19% of respondents

As a full-time employee and homeowner, the Discerning Home Curator doesn’t have time to worry about his door hardware every day. It needs to looks beautiful, be secure and bring convenience to his life. That’s why the discerning Home Curator invests time and energy into researching before he purchases anything. He relies heavily on product reviews and websites, gathering as much information as possible before making a selection that will impact his home.

For the Traditional Safety Seeker, protecting her home (and everything she loves inside) is a top priority. She’s wary of smart home technology, because unlike a lock’s design or durability, she can’t see how it help keep her home secure. That’s why the Traditional Safety Seeker is more likely to buy locks offline at a home improvement store. Thought she’s not the sole decision maker, she has a say, and comparing products in-aisle helps influence buying decisions.

Everyday Fixers – 23% of respondents

As a suburban homeowner, the Everyday Fixer takes care of his home, his way. He looks for durable, functional locks, which is why one-key convenience matters to him. The Everyday Fixer takes pride in his home and the way it looks, so he also wants locks with style. The Everyday Fixer buys a lock when he needs one and purchases in-store because he wants to see and feel the locks to compare in-aisle. For him, buying door hardware is about look, feel, and trusting his instincts.

No-Fuss Buyers – 19% of respondents

When it comes to home security, the No-Fuss Buyer purchases locks out of need and trusts more traditional designs and door hardware. Even thought safety is a big concern, the security grade isn’t a main motivator; it’s more about feeling safe. Because of the limited amount of time spent researching, the No-Fuss Buyer likes to purchase in-store and get product information in real time from sales associates. For the No-Fuss Buyer, out of sight means out of mind: locks that are available and on shelves are the second biggest purchase driver to durability.

About the Author

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Steven A. Karantzoulidis is the Web Editor for Security Sales & Integration. He graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a degree in Communication and has a background in Film, A/V and Social Media.

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