August 2023 - 18

INNOVATOR OF THE YEAR
" Our newest store, which will be
CountryMax
Victor, New York
countrymax.com
Year founded:
CountryMax began in 1984 as a small farm supply and
feed store owned by the Payne family.
What is your garden center known for?
We're known for a few things: unique, hard-to-find
plants; a unique nursery space featuring our distinctive
timber-frame structures and shade houses; and
knowledgeable team members.
How do you set your store apart from the
big boxes?
We work directly with local growers as much as possible.
Also, we've created an opt-in " nursery notification "
email list so customers can be alerted when fresh plant
material arrives.
Our CountryMax Lawn & Garden Life website
(countrymax.com/lawn-garden-life), launched in
April 2022, features monthly updates, to-do lists, and
gardening tips and tricks - much more content than
you get on the product-focused box store sites. Between
its launch in April 2022 and the end of the year, the site
hosted more than 33,000 pageviews and 12,182 unique
visitors. Emails announcing new monthly content
received an average open rate of 34%, which is several
percentage points above our standard email open rate
and well above industry standards.
Employees have been able to use the site as a reference
tool and point customers to it.
Our newest store, which will be opening this fall, will
even feature a chicken coop with chickens in a section of
the nursery. The big boxes aren't doing that!
opening this fall, will even feature
a chicken coop with chickens in a
section of nursery. The big boxes
aren't doing that! "
How do you communicate company goals
with your team?
Since April, our nursery manager has been out traveling
all our 18 stores and will through August, checking displays
and training team members.
We have a monthly employee newsletter that includes a
nursery update, merchandising objectives, hints and tips.
Most importantly, we hire people who love plants
and gardening.
How long have you been holding events at
the store?
We've been hosting on-site events in CountryMax
stores for more than 10 years. In 2022, we really ramped
up the focus on events with the addition of a full-time
events coordinator.
What makes your events so successful?
We offer our events live on-site and simulcast via Zoom,
all of which have been offered for free.
We have a well-established communications stream,
through which we promote the events via in-store posters,
social media and email. Follow-up surveys help us to fine
tune topics, speakers, locations and processes.
We partner with master gardeners at the Cornell
Cooperative Extension to provide highly informative
expert sessions.
We also have dedicated events spaces; 10 of our stores
have event spaces that can host up to 40 people, equipped
with tables, chairs and projection screens.
18 | LAWN & GARDEN RETAILER | AUGUST 2023
18 |
Photo courtesy of CountryMax.
http://www.countrymax.com http://www.countrymax.com/lawn-garden-life

August 2023

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of August 2023

Editors' Letter
Table of Contents
Headlines
Calendar
Editors' Picks
Innovator of the Year: Meet the Lawn & Garden Retailer Innovators of the Year!
Special Advertising Section
Technology: Open-to-Buy Inventory Management Key for Retailers
Green Goods: Trial-Proven Produce
Product Focus: Garden Pharmacy
Marketplace
Ad Index
5 Minutes With ...: Ken Lain
August 2023 - 1
August 2023 - 2
August 2023 - 3
August 2023 - Editors' Letter
August 2023 - 5
August 2023 - Table of Contents
August 2023 - 7
August 2023 - Headlines
August 2023 - 9
August 2023 - 10
August 2023 - Calendar
August 2023 - Editors' Picks
August 2023 - 13
August 2023 - Innovator of the Year: Meet the Lawn & Garden Retailer Innovators of the Year!
August 2023 - 15
August 2023 - 16
August 2023 - 17
August 2023 - 18
August 2023 - 19
August 2023 - 20
August 2023 - 21
August 2023 - 22
August 2023 - 23
August 2023 - 24
August 2023 - 25
August 2023 - 26
August 2023 - 27
August 2023 - 28
August 2023 - 29
August 2023 - Special Advertising Section
August 2023 - 31
August 2023 - Technology: Open-to-Buy Inventory Management Key for Retailers
August 2023 - 33
August 2023 - Green Goods: Trial-Proven Produce
August 2023 - 35
August 2023 - 36
August 2023 - 37
August 2023 - 38
August 2023 - 39
August 2023 - 40
August 2023 - 41
August 2023 - Product Focus: Garden Pharmacy
August 2023 - 43
August 2023 - Marketplace
August 2023 - 45
August 2023 - 46
August 2023 - 47
August 2023 - Ad Index
August 2023 - 49
August 2023 - 5 Minutes With ...: Ken Lain
August 2023 - 51
August 2023 - 52
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/march-2024
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/february-2024
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/january-2024
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/november-december-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/september-october-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/august-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/july-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/june-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/may-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/april-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/thrive-guide-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/march-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/february-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/january-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/lgr-november-december-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/september-october-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/august-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/lgr-july-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/june-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/may-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/april-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/march-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/february-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/january-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/thriveguide-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/november-december-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/september-october-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/august-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/july-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/june-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/may-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/april-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/march-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/february-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/january-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/thriveguide-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/november-december-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/september-october-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/august-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/july-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/june-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/may-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/april-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/march-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/february-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/january-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/november-december-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/september-october-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/august-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/july-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/june-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/may-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/april-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/march-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/february-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/LGR/january-2019
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com