Best Practices, Operations, V7I6

Shifting Shed Business Strategies

(Photo courtesy of Stor-Mor Portable Buildings)

When the pandemic hit last year, businesses across the board were met with a massive moment of change. 

In the building industry, this often led to business growth instability and a lack of consumer confidence in major home investments due to the unpredictability of the economy and employment.  

On the other hand, the shed industry experienced an increase in customer demand like never before. 

In what felt like an overnight transition to a work-from-home society, the shed industry began picking up speed alongside the increasing number of people looking to convert traditional sheds into innovative workspaces. 

Tiny homes and more livable space sheds also saw an uptick as people spent more time at home and had more time to focus on these types of projects. 

However, while increased demand for sheds was one unexpected positive, shed builders continue to face obstacles in terms of supply, shipping delays, adjusting pricing structures, and needed business strategy shifts to accommodate these changes. 

We sat down with the team at Stor-Mor Portable Buildings to hear their expert perspectives on successfully shifting business strategies amid COVID-19 in the shed industry. We discussed insights on industry trends, what they’ve done to navigate rapid changes in infrastructure and supply chain management, as well as advice for other shed companies. 


“From our earliest days in the outdoor shed business to the start of the pandemic, we’ve seen customers lean more and more toward quality buildings with innovative structural designs,” says Darren Warren, chief executive officer of Stor-Mor. 

He goes on to say, “This shift in buying patterns has transformed the way we do business to meet customer needs.” 

This, in addition to an over 40 percent increase in pricing at the start of COVID-19, led Stor-Mor to actively make changes to their overall logistics and management to stay competitive. 

Like many other shed builders, Stor-Mor took on a backlog of buildings as prices began to increase in the market. They realized that in order to manage losses and limit risks, changes in strategic management of the business would need to take place fast. 

One major shift in business strategy began with the implementation of innovative software that analyzes building and product needs on a detailed system to help efficiently track specs, inventory, and more. 

By investing time and money in efficiently integrating this new automated technology into their business flow, Stor-Mor is now able to manage rapid pricing shifts and better focus on market needs. 

Stor-Mor also attributes a large part of its success to a strong accounting approach and new software that enabled them to streamline their internal processes with inventory control and management of the oscillating prices of products. 

“While we were very fortunate to limit our risk, the biggest challenge was to make our business more flexible,” Warren says. “We are now set up with a structure that allows room for our business to work remotely on everything we do, should we need to in the future. 

“The best thing any building company can do is to make these kinds of changes now to prepare for potential market shifts.”


A trend in purchasing behavior Stor-Mor highlights is a shift in traditional in-person sales vs. online sales. 

Like other industries that previously relied primarily on delivering sales in a brick-and-mortar setting, the shed space has seen online sales increase exponentially and Stor-Mor says that offering an efficient online purchasing experience is an essential element to staying competitive in the business. 

“We pay a lot of attention to the changing trends within the industry and one thing that proved to be significant during this transitional time was that we were not changing what we were offering to the customer product-wise but rather, we were changing the way we offered them to meet new customer needs,” says Kevin Chavarria, chief operating officer of Stor-Mor. 

Stor-Mor is confident that shed companies will see more online offerings across the market, making investing in an effective, easy-to-manage online purchasing infrastructure a shift that owners will need to make if they want to remain competitive. 


Warren and Chavarria note that along with making technological improvements to their processing and purchasing systems, it’s vital for shed companies to adapt now to avoid issues down the road. 

The industry is currently experiencing rapid growth and while that is a positive outcome of the pandemic, it does not come without challenges. Warren emphasizes that assessing your business needs and creating a structure that allows for flexibility is key to remaining steady when obstacles arise. 

Finally, Stor-Mor advises that these types of changes are only successful if you sell quality sheds, which are a result of selecting durable, premium products, which are an important part of delivering customers the trending elevated outdoor structures they are seeking.

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