U.S. Online Home and Garden Market Will Blossom into a $4 Billion Opportunity in 2004, IDC Says; Partnerships Will Cultivate Vendor’s Success

FRAMINGHAM, MA – JULY 31, 2000 – The seeds have been planted in the U.S. online home and garden market, and if cared for properly, this ecommerce opportunity could bloom into a $4 billion business in 2004, according to IDC.

"The online home and garden market is in its infancy. The hurdle of selling furniture online has delayed its development," said Jim Williamson, senior analyst for IDC's Consumer eCommerce: Consumer Goods research. "Over the next two years, however, the market and the position of those competing in it will change dramatically. New technology, innovative business models, and a coming wave of partnerships will transform this market into a multibillion- dollar opportunity."

IDC believes the key to succeeding in this market will be effective partnering and suggests vendors initiate a strategy that incorporates breadth of products.

"In the home and garden market, only the garden segment has the potential to grow large, independent businesses," Williamson said. "Niche players in the furniture, cooking, or home decor spaces should form partnerships across segments to compete with broad category companies."

Partnering for content will also be critical. Content that aides in decision making or helps drive choice will be essential.

Right now, traditional brick-and-mortar companies such as Sears and Wal- Mart have an advantage in this market. They bring a loyal customer base, trusted brand name, and deep retail pockets to the online world. However, IDC believes that online-only brands will build strategies to extend their reach into the offline world.

IDC recently published two reports that discuss the online home and garden market. U.S. Online Home and Garden Market: Forecast and Analysis (IDC #B22526) forecasts revenue growth in the market through 2004. The report analyzes how the market will develop and specifically looks at each segment. Market drivers and inhibitors are discussed, and recommendations for vendors competing in this market are included. U.S. Home and Garden Market: Competitive Scorecard (IDC #22684) examines the competitive landscape in the market. IDC's Leadership Grid, which rates vendors based on their alignment with market opportunity and their ability to gain market share, is included. Snapshots of the market's players are included. Additionally, IDC presents its analysis of a winning business model and makes recommendations on how vendors can increase their share in this market. To purchase the report, contact Demetra Georgakopoulos at 1-800-343-4952 extension 4496 or at demetra@idc.com.

About IDC

IDC delivers dependable, high-impact insights and advice on the future of ebusiness, the Internet, and technology to help organizations make sound business decisions. IDC forecasts worldwide markets and trends and analyzes business strategies, technologies, and vendors, using a combination of rigorous primary research and in-depth competitive analysis. IDC provides global research with local content through more than 500 analysts in 43 countries worldwide. IDC's customers comprise the world's leading IT suppliers, IT organizations, ebusiness companies, and the financial community. Additional information can be found at http://www.idc.com.

IDC is a division of IDG , the world's leading IT media, research and exposition company.

All product and company names may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.