I shopped at Home Depot and Lowe's, the top home improvement stores in the US, and Lowe's was the clear winner

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderLowe’s (left) was much more organised than Home Depot (right).


I went to Lowe’s first, and I found that it provided a better shopping experience than Home Depot overall.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderA Lowe’s storefront in Brooklyn, New York.

The first thing I noticed about Lowe’s was how it mentally took me right back to the suburbs. Walking up to the door, I felt like I could have been in the middle of suburbia because of all the open space.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe entrance of a Lowe’s storefront in Brooklyn, New York.

Home Depot felt more urban because what was empty space in front of Lowe’s was a parking garage and garden section in front of Home Depot.

Joey Hadden/Business Insider

While both stores provided interactive shopping experiences …

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderA Home Depot in Brooklyn, New York.

… Lowe’s had a slight edge when it came to its low prices and atmosphere.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe display area at a Lowe’s in Brooklyn, New York.

Sometimes when a customer finds an item at another store for a lower price, companies will sell the item to the customer for that same lower price. This is called a price matching policy.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderA deal on a Samsung dryer at a Lowe’s in Brooklyn, New York.

Source: Home Depot,Lowe’s


Both Lowe’s and Home Depot offer price matching but Lowe’s has a slightly better policy. While both stores give customers an additional 10% off of that lower price…

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderKobalt hardware products at a Lowe’s in Brooklyn, New York.

Source: Home Depot,Lowe’s


… Home Depot’s policy has more restrictions than Lowe’s’. Home Depot requires you to have a lower price when purchasing the item.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderPick-up lockers for online orders at Home Depot.

Source: Home Depot


Lowe’s’ policy gives customers 30 days after purchasing the item to find a lower price. This way customers can focus on purchasing the best product for them and worry about getting the best deal later on.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe entrance to a Lowe’s in Brooklyn, New York.

Source: Lowe’s


Lowe’s had a better atmosphere than Home Depot too, thanks to its use of colour and cleanliness.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderAn LG refrigerator on display at a Lowe’s in Brooklyn, New York.

Colours have emotional effects on people, and Home Depot’s colour of choice is orange.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderHome Depot’s logo is orange and so are most of the signs in the store.

Source: Business Insider


Now don’t get me wrong — I love orange. It’s my favourite colour …

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderHome Depot’s logo is orange and so are most of the signs in the store.

… but seeing so much of it in one place made me feel like I was supposed to be in a hurry.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderHome Depot’s logo is orange and so are most of the signs in the store.

That’s because orange sends an aggressive message. It gives the customers a sense of urgency or a call to action.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderHome Depot has orange carts too.

Source: Business Insider


Meanwhile, at Lowe’s, the colour blue creates a sensation of trust and security.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderLowe’s’ logo is blue and so are most of the signs in the store.

If I was working on a home improvement project, I’d like to feel comfortable taking my time.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe display area of a Lowe’s in Brooklyn, New York.

Lowe’s’ blue branding gave me a sense of calmness as I roamed the store. But it wasn’t just the colour that kept me calm.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderLowe’s’ logo is blue and so are most of the signs in the store.

Lowe’s was also significantly neater than Home Depot.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderAt Lowe’s, everything was in its place.

The display area was clear of any extra stuff that’s not meant to be displayed …

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderAt Lowe’s, everything was in its place.

… like the packaged appliances which were too close to the model kitchens at Home Depot …

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderI struggled to fully examine the refrigerator and stove because there were boxes of huge appliances so close to them.

… or the backs of refrigerators that were visible in Home Depot’s display area.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe display area at Home Depot.

The display area at Lowe’s was like a shiny walkway with shelves of products neatly surrounding it …

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe display area at Lowe’s.

… while Home Depot’s display area was more like an actual maze, with random opened boxes creating dead-ends.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe display area at Home Depot.

Overall, Home Depot was a bit of a struggle to get around.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe display area at Home Depot.

Like in the indoor plant section, where large plants were placed sporadically on the ground …

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe indoor plant section at Home Depot.

… blocking the aisles …

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe indoor plant section at Home Depot.

… which were already quite narrow.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe indoor plant section at Home Depot.

A couple of plants were out of place at Lowe’s, too. But the wider aisles made it less of an issue.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe indoor plant section at Lowe’s.

Sale sections at Home Depot were seemingly randomly placed.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderA sale section at Home Depot.

In fact, a lot of products seemed to be randomly stacked on the floor, blocking walkways.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderProducts stacked at Home Depot.

This made the store appear sloppy …

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderProducts stacked at Home Depot.

… especially since every aisle was so specifically labelled.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderAisle labels at Home Depot.

While Lowe’s and Home Depot have their differences, both stores provided a guided and interactive experience.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderDeals at a Lowe’s in Brooklyn, New York.

Both stores had clearly labelled aisles and items.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderAisle labels at Home Depot.

But Home Depot has an app that directs you to the item you’re looking for.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderA sign for the Home Depot’s app in-store.

Through research, I found out Lowe’s has an app that does the same thing. It’s just not well-advertised in-store.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderA Lowe’s in Brooklyn, New York.

Source: Digital Trends


Both stores also provided directions for setting up most of their products.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderDirections for installing an LED at Lowe’s.

And both stores had interactive elements to draw the shopper in, but some were more practical than others.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderAn interactive advertisement at Lowe’s.

For example, Lowe’s had carpet and flooring samples that you could hold in your hand …

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderA carpet sample at Lowe’s.

… which is great, except that I would never have the desire to touch the bottom of a carpet in my own home. I’d rather just feel it against the surface of something else.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderA carpet sample at Home Depot.

Luckily, I could do that at Home Depot with their more practical display.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderA carpet sample at Home Depot.

Lowe’s had a more interactive shower display.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderShowers on display at Lowe’s.

They had many backlit tubs and showers on display for different types of homes.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderShowers and tubs on display at Lowe’s.

And they were all at floor-level, so you could stand inside of them.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderShowers on display at Lowe’s.

Meanwhile at Home Depot, only three showers were at floor-level.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderShowers on display at Home Depot.

One was on the top shelf, so it was difficult to even see, much less stand inside.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderA shower on display at Home Depot.

But both stores had adequate interactive displays of products you can control with your hands.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderSampling light bulbs and dimmers at Lowe’s.

It was especially nice to be able to see how touch-control products felt, like the thermostats on display at Home Depot.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderSampling thermostats at Home Depot.

But Lowe’s took it to the next level with a drill sampling station, where customers can drill holes into this wood plank to test out the products.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderLowe’s had a drill sampling station.

While both stores will get you started on your next home improvement project, the organisation and price points at Lowe’s will make you feel more at ease while doing it.

Joey Hadden/Business InsiderThe display floor at Lowe’s.

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