Guess which category has recently piqued consumer interest?
Even as parts of the world start to reopen after several months of lockdown, many of us are still focused on making our homes as comfortable as possible while we weather the pandemic. In the past few years, the furniture industry has faced digital transformation challenges, which emerged as a result of changing consumer behaviors, new technologies, and industry trends. Now that people are inside all the time, they’re buying furniture for their work-from-home, home-schooling setups, and investing in fun pieces to liven up their spaces.
These are some trends that will set the pace for the upcoming year, but that will also help companies in their future growth.
Consumers care about not only the quality of the furniture they purchase, but they’re paying more attention to the ethics behind their home furnishing purchases. Sustainability encompasses many factors in furniture production: environmental impact, treatment of workers producing the furniture and harvesting raw materials, and all of the ways that production contributes to these factors. Eco-friendly furniture is expected to become an even higher priority for consumers as we move forward. With increasing aim to reduce emissions, rising prominence towards sustainability as a prevalent trend in home design and renovation is causing traction in the market.
Today IKEA uses 80% of its wood from recycled or FSC (Forestry Stewardship Council) certified sources. At some point in the year, Ikea plans to reach 100% sustainable sourcing for all of its wood. This is an incredible milestone. IKEA is planning to make every product with only recycled or renewable materials. IKEA and other platforms have a great responsibility to protect the world’s forests.
According to Bewgle, the purchase trend of sustainable furniture had already been accelerated before the pandemic but, post-pandemic – due to increasing concerns by different sections of the society specifically Millennials & GEN-Z, there has been a steady increase in demand for eco-friendly products.
Sheltering at home may mean avoiding stores, but online shopping for certain home-related items has increased. This market is starting to hold impressive promise as more and more people start to realise the advantages of buying their furnishings from home. Major brick-and-mortar retailers continue to explore the possibility of reaching into this market and seeing if customers will follow in their wake.
Walmart-owned Flipkart said COVID-19 pandemic has catalysed new demand patterns across product categories, including furniture, as people spend more time at home. While tables and chairs are the best sellers, consumers are also buying dining tables and couches, and a bulk of these purchases are happening online.
According to Google Trends, we see a constant increase in online furniture shopping rather than buying furniture in-store as the brands have been surging to provide a seamless online/omni-channel shopping experience.
The rise of direct-to-consumer (DTC) brands has changed the consumers’ purchasing behaviour. The DTC brands are reaching consumers directly which is easier and cheaper than ever before. Furniture shopping was starting to move online before the pandemic, but now it’s likely here to stay.
Beyond the dishwasher or a vacuum cleaner, people are now investing in a study/computer table or an ergonomic office chair. Long extended hours of working at a house desk are taking a toll on our backs and necks and as important as getting our work done, our spines are in need of extra comfort. Thus, most of the people are looking for that perfect office chair that suits their needs.
According to the Bewgle research, it was clearly seen by a whopping 140% increase in sales for April 2020 as compared to the same period last year, when the overall category growth has been between 50%-60% YoY growth. And, consumers are now investing more in creating their own comfortable space at home whereas there is a notable increase in the demand for ergonomic furniture across furniture segments.
Customers will continue needing desks and desk chairs, sure. But as consumers are working from home, they’re also looking for accessories: lamps, side tables, even comfy chairs to make their home offices feel more enjoyable and warm while still serving as a workspace conducive to productivity.
With the pandemic showing no signs of subsiding, people are realizing that work from home (WFH) might just be their long-term reality. To help people transition better and adopt the WFH lifestyle seamlessly, many companies have given a home office allowance or other facilities such as furniture and computers.
Companies such as Ikea, Pepperfry, Flipkart, and Amazon, which sell furniture on their e-commerce platforms, are continuing to witness a rise in demand for home-office furniture – as work-from-home looks like here to stay.
According to Bewgle analysis, there is an increase in the sales of home office furnishing. It has also been witnessed that the growth in the sale of home office furnishing is more than ever before.
Millennials have reshaped the way we buy furniture, and they’re the largest shopping and buying population – for now. They’ve come to realize they want a well-furnished home. Gen Z is up and coming, but for now, millennials are the age group that currently lead buying power. The biggest way that millennials differ from past generations is in their online shopping habits.
When marketing to millennials, smaller and less expensive items are likely to be more appealing. Marketing urban and eco-friendly pieces that are compact and multifunctional will also attract millennial shoppers. They are looking for retailers that carry modern designs. Modern designs are more unique, which fits their personal style. Also, the Increasing influx of millennial and generation Z consumers purchasing eco-friendly furniture is likely to drive the market in the future.
Marketers understand that this group has money to spend and wants to aim for quality items that will make their home shine and keep value at the same time.
Embracing the ways millennials have reshaped this industry will position furniture sellers to be ready for new technologies, new marketing strategies, and new changes that will come with each new generation.
Innovating products to these changing trends will be the key to success of Home Goods companies. For more specific insights for product categories, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.