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Cleaning the House - US - June 2015

"While Americans’ lives may be busier than ever, they continue to carve out time for housecleaning, reflecting the importance they place on keeping their homes clean. The amount of average time adults spend cleaning the house in a typical week confirms an ongoing opportunity for household cleaning products that help save time and effort."
- John Owen, Senior Household Analyst

This report discusses the following key topics:

  • Easy-cleaning surface cleaner segments gain, disinfection still important 
  • More than four hours a week spent on cleaning, gender gap narrows
  • An overall preference for quick, efficient cleanups

This report examines consumer attitudes and behaviors toward housecleaning, including the amount of time people spend doing housecleaning, their approach to housecleaning overall as well as to individual cleaning tasks, and their preferences in cleaning product attributes and benefits.

Even amid ever-more-hectic household schedules, consumers continue to find the time to do housecleaning, reflecting the importance consumers place on keeping their homes clean and healthy. While consumers continue to gravitate to cleaning products that facilitate quick, efficient cleanups, they are unlikely to be willing to compromise on cleaning performance. There is also an opportunity, especially among the heaviest cleaners, to highlight the safety of cleaning product ingredients. 

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
      • Executive Summary

        • The issues
          • Easy-cleaning surface cleaner segments gain, disinfection still important
            • Figure 1: Total US sales of household surface cleaners, by segment, at current prices, 2012 and 2014
          • More than four hours a week spent on cleaning, gender gap narrows
            • Figure 2: Time spent housecleaning per week, by gender and age, March 2015
          • An overall preference for quick, efficient cleanups
            • Figure 3: Overall approach: A little at a time versus top-to-bottom cleaning, by time spent cleaning the house, March 2015
          • The opportunities
            • Toilets, kitchen countertops are focal points for cleaning and disinfection
              • Figure 4: Approach to cleaning the toilet and kitchen countertops, March 2015
            • Strong interest in products that provide a longer lasting clean
              • Figure 5: Interest in select new cleaning products, March 2015
            • Heavy cleaners more attuned to the safety of cleaning products
              • Figure 6: Attitudes toward ingredient safety, by time spent cleaning, March 2015
            • What it means
            • The Market – What You Need to Know

              • Time spent on housework declined only slightly between 2003 and 2013
                • Easy-cleaning surface cleaner segments gain, disinfection still important
                  • Flat sales in largest segment slow growth of cleaning equipment category
                  • Market Factors

                    • Time spent on housework declined only slightly between 2003 and 2013
                      • Gender gap in housework continues to narrow
                        • Figure 7: Time spent daily on housework, minutes, 2003-13
                      • More households, but households getting smaller
                        • Figure 8: Households, by presence of own children, 2003-13
                        • Figure 9: Household size, 2003-13
                      • Growing influence of Hispanic market
                        • Figure 10: Households with own children, by race and Hispanic origin of householder, 2013
                        • Figure 11: Population, by race and Hispanic origin, 2009-19
                    • Market Perspective

                      • Easy-cleaning surface cleaner segments gain, disinfection still important
                        • Figure 12: Total US sales of household surface cleaners, by segment, at current prices, 2012 and 2014
                      • Flat sales in largest segment slow growth of cleaning equipment category
                        • Figure 13: Total US sales of household cleaning equipment, by segment, at current prices, 2012 and 2014
                    • Key Players – What You Need to Know

                      • Products that enable quick spot cleaning and disinfection gain
                        • A focus on safer ingredients
                          • Improving the cleaning experience
                            • Products that require elbow grease lose ground
                              • Robotics poised to gain
                                • Self-cleaning surfaces could reduce the need for cleaning
                                • What’s Working?

                                  • Products that enable quick spot cleaning and disinfection gain
                                    • A focus on safer ingredients
                                      • Improving the cleaning experience, brought to life in marketing
                                          • Figure 14: #SwifferDad video featuring Anthony Anderson, 2015
                                      • What’s Struggling?

                                        • Products that require elbow grease lose ground
                                          • Figure 15: Household usage of select household cleaning products, 2010 and 2015
                                      • What’s Next?

                                        • Robotics poised to gain
                                          • Self-cleaning surfaces
                                            • Long-lasting treatments
                                            • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                              • Housecleaning a high-participation and increasingly gender-neutral chore
                                                • More than four hours a week spent on cleaning
                                                  • An overall preference for quick, efficient cleanups
                                                    • Toilets, kitchen countertops are focal points for cleaning and disinfection
                                                      • Strong interest in products that provide a longer lasting clean
                                                        • Heavy cleaners pressed for time but less willing to trade results for convenience
                                                          • Heavy cleaners more attuned to the safety of cleaning products
                                                          • Responsibility for Cleaning the House

                                                            • Housecleaning a high-participation and increasingly gender-neutral chore
                                                              • Figure 16: Responsibility for cleaning the house, March 2015
                                                            • In their words: Sharing responsibility
                                                            • Time Spent Cleaning the House

                                                              • More than four hours a week spent on cleaning
                                                                • Figure 17: Time spent housecleaning per week, by gender and age, March 2015
                                                              • Cleaners in larger households spend more time cleaning
                                                                • Figure 18: Time spent housecleaning per week, by number of people in household, March 2015
                                                            • Overall Approach to Cleaning the House

                                                              • An overall preference for quick, efficient cleanups
                                                                • Figure 19: Overall approach to cleaning the house, March 2015
                                                              • Heaviest cleaners prefer top-to-bottom cleaning, specialized products
                                                                • Figure 20: Overall approach: A little at a time versus top-to-bottom cleaning, by time spent cleaning the house, March 2015
                                                              • In their words: Cleaning routines
                                                              • Approach to Specific Housecleaning Tasks

                                                                • Toilets, kitchen countertops are focal points for cleaning and disinfection
                                                                  • Windows and furniture less likely to get regular cleaning
                                                                    • Figure 21: Approach to specific housecleaning tasks, March 2015
                                                                  • In their words: Cleaning priorities
                                                                  • Interest in New Cleaning Products

                                                                    • Strong interest in products that provide a longer lasting clean
                                                                      • Natural alternatives
                                                                        • Moderate interest in robotics, more education needed
                                                                          • Figure 22: Interest in new cleaning products, March 2015
                                                                      • Attitudes toward Household Care

                                                                        • Heavy cleaners pressed for time but less willing to trade results for convenience
                                                                          • Heavy cleaners more attuned to the safety of cleaning products
                                                                            • Figure 23: Attitudes toward household care, by time spent, March 2015
                                                                          • In their words: Concern over cleaning product ingredients
                                                                          • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                            • Data sources
                                                                              • Consumer survey data
                                                                                • Consumer qualitative research
                                                                                  • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                                    • Abbreviations

                                                                                    Companies Covered

                                                                                    • Walmart Stores (USA)

                                                                                    Cleaning the House - US - June 2015

                                                                                    £3,199.84 (Excl.Tax)