Disclaimer: This is an example of a student written essay.
Click here for sample essays written by our professional writers.

Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of UKEssays.com.

The Worlds Largest Furniture Retailer Marketing Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Marketing
Wordcount: 3233 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

Reference this


Swedish company IKEA was the world’s largest furniture retailer since the early 1990’s. It sold inexpensive furniture of Scandinavian design. The company operated in 55 countries with a workforce of 76000. IKEA offered nearly 12000 items to the home furnishings market worldwide. It sold a wide range of products including furniture, accessories, bathrooms and kitchens at 186 retail stores in 30 countries across Europe, North America, Southeast Asia, Middle East and Australia. IKEA is well known for its exclusive model, low price, wide range of product and flat packing. The Sweden-based Inter IKEA Systems (IKEA) was ranked 42 by Business Week magazine in its list of Top 100 global brands for the year 2005. In January 2005, IKEA was placed third in BrandChannel’s fourth annual Reader’s Choice Awards for the global brand with the most impact in 2004. According to the Brand Channel rankings, IKEA was the #1 brand in Europe and Africa. IKEA was the world’s largest furniture retailer that specialized in stylish but inexpensive Scandinavian designed furniture.IKEA’s success was recognized to its vast experience in the furniture retail market, its product differentiation and cost leadership. The company sold its furniture in kits, to be assembled by the customers at home. In addition to furniture, IKEA also sold utility items such as utensils, hooks, clips, stands, etc. IKEA’s founder Ingvar Kamprad (Kamprad) had built an international furniture chain of 226 stores in Europe, Africa, Asia and the US. For fiscal year 2004-05, the company generated revenues of US$ 17.9 billion, a 15% increase over the previous fiscal year. IKEA sales reached 21.2billion Euros in 2008 showing an increase of 7%. The biggest sales countries are Germany, USA, France, UK and Sweden. In 2008 IKEA opened 21 new stores in11 countries and expects to open around 20 more in 2009 as part of its strategy for growth. IKEA held a market share of not more than 10% in the markets in which it operated. In spite of this, it had been successful in almost all countries, because of public awareness of the IKEA brand.

IKEA is a global company that has invested and is present in many countries; it promotes its products and services using the same brand in all markets synchronized from its one main corporate office in Sweden which is responsible for a global policy that concentrates on cost management, effectiveness and value.

This company has a online shopping site for shopping and they have kept some of the best of what they already offered there. We can analysis their catalog online but we cannot look at each item, that’s made through the e-shopping. The full catalog of items is not available online, but many pieces in each category are. There are 17 current categories to shop-kitchen, bedroom, living room, bathroom, office, storage furniture, accents and decorations, chairs and stools, children’s furniture, cookware and tableware, dining furniture, seasonal, rugs and flooring and many more. The categories are accessed from a drop-down menu on the main shopping page. Select the type of item you’re looking for and you’re taken to full-color photos of the various items with pricing. Several items are shown on each page and from there you can look at the details of an individual item.

This individual item page gives details including sizing, finish, care instructions, package measurements, and composition. It also gives you special features of the product and suggestions on use.

The items range from huge entertainment cabinets to kitchen tools-thousands of dollars to just a few cents. If it fits in a room, they probably sell it. Couches, bedding,

curtains, rugs, potatopeelers, plantstands, etc.


You can return the product within 45 days of purchase but have to show the voucher. Be remind that if the carrier is fail to deliver you’ll pay for the delivery charges.If the product is damage they don’t refund.

Localization in Global Markets

IKEA targeted middle class customers worldwide. IKEA made shopping easy for customers. For example, right at the entrance of the store, customers could drop their kids at the playroom which had many types of safe play kit, and then shop on their own in a relaxed mode. The stores were constructed in the form of a circle, to allow shoppers to view all sections of the store. IKEA target market was the global middle class which shared buying habits. The customer spending outline was also related across countries.With these similarities, IKEA realized that to strengthen its presence in the global market, it was necessary to localize. For example in China, IKEA produced 250,000 plastic placemats in 2005 to honour the year of rooster.

IKEA stores were usually located outside urban areas, isolated from other shops. This was done intentionally so that IKEA could create a complete shopping experience for customers. The IKEA products were themselves beautifully crafted and interesting. Their stores were so constructed as to fascinate shoppers.


Strength of IKEA

IKEA is a highly known brand attracting key demographic customer groups.The IKEA business model is unique in its construction and execution with little direct competition on a like for like basis.Success has been driven from the price architecture offering value to the customer in innovative but functional products. Despite the large shed operations IKEA operate there is a degree of specialist knowledge within key product areas where purchases are more considered and require assistance such as kitchen installations.

Get Help With Your Essay

If you need assistance with writing your essay, our professional essay writing service is here to help!

Essay Writing Service

Weakness of IKEA

International brand has a level of trust on European markets with 90% of the stores based in Europe and the balance crossways America, Middle East and Asia. Although the model promotes low prices it has been recognized there is an related low level of customer service which couples telling that there is a require to work on service to make sure a total shopping skill and ensure repeat business within the active customer base. The development of Ecommerce has been essential to race in a modern technological world because of marketplace movement, however there is also a reflection this movement into multi channel retailing moves away from the basic vision of the customer being able to see and touch the product.

Opportunities for the company

IKEA are moving from International to global status through the development of Asia and Eastern European models. There is a new and emerging market in China as the country undergoes a huge industrial revolution IKEA’s traditional product value is low price high volume product but the movement into mid and higher price points will see an opportunity to move the demographic base and increase the average basket value with less confidence on a limited demographic collection. At a time of recession in the global economy, it may appear that some companies will reduce take up of services that Ikea’s offers. However, in tough times clients tend to focus upon cost reduction and outsourcing – with are strategies that Ikea’s offers. So hard times could be profitable for Infosys Although there are negative associations within the development of the IKEA Ecommerce site there is an associated opportunity to get growth and increase levels of customer service as the additional transactional ability will reduce pressure from stores to a certain degree.

Threats for the company

Normal retailers are starting to copy the model of low cost value flat packed furniture in growing competitive retail market that will impact on the interest of IKEA.With economic concerns over rising living costs and depleting disposable income there is an overall threat to the performance of the business in UK and American markets specifically.

1.Political Factors

Ikea is working a globalized background with stores around the world. This company’s performance is highly influenced by the political and legislative conditions of many countries, including the European Union (EU). For employment legislations, the government encourages companies to provide a mix of job opportunities from flexible, lower-paid and locally-based jobs to highly-skilled, higher-paid and centrally-located jobs. Also to meet the demand from population categories such as students, working parents and senior citizens. Ikea understands that retailing this company has a great impact on jobs and people factors being a naturally local and labour-intensive sector. IKEA employs large numbers of; student, disabled and elderly workers, often paying them lower rates.

2. Economical Factors

Economic factors are worry to IKEA. The Company expecting to control demand, costs, prices and profits. One of the most important factors on the economy is high redundancy levels, which decrease the valuable demand for many goods. These financial factors are mainly outside the control of the company but their special effects on performance and the marketing mix can be reflective. even though international business is still increasing and is expected to give bigger amounts to Ikea’s income, the company is still very much reliant on the UK market. Ikea would be poorly affected by any delay in the UK furniture market and are bare to market attention risks.

3. Social/Cultural Factors

IKEA have increased the amount of items available for sale. Demographic changes such as the aging population, an increase in female workers and a decline in home meal preparation mean that UK retailers are also focusing on added-value products and services. In adding, the company spotlight is now in the direction of; the own business mix share, the supply series and other operational improvements, which can drive costs out of the business. National retailers are ever more reticent to take on new suppliers. The customer demanding the products which is a function of their social condition and their consequent attitudes and beliefs. Customers are becoming more and more aware of health issues, and their attitudes.

4. Technological Factors

Technology is a main macro-environmental variable which has subjective the development of many of the Ikea products. The customer and the company benefited by the new technology. When the products are radily available and services are really good then the customer satisfaction goes up. IKEA stores operate the following technologies:

Wireless strategy

Intelligent range

Electronic shelf classification

Self explore machine

5. Environmental Factors

In 2003, there has been increased pressure on many companies and managers to acknowledge their responsibility to society, and act in a way which benefits society overall (Lindgreen and Hingley, 2003). The major societal issue threatening furniture retailers has been environmental issues, a key area for companies to act in a socially responsible way. Hence, by recognizing this trend within the broad ethical stance, Ikea’s corporate social responsibility is concerned with the ways in which an organization exceeds the minimum obligations to stakeholders specified through regulation and corporate governance.

The ecological process taken, comprise the following:

Replacing PVC in wallpapers, home textile, shower curtains, lampshades, and furniture.

Minimizing the use of formaldehyde in its products, with textiles.

producing a model of chair made from 100% post consumer plastic waste;

Introducing a cycle of air-inflatable furniture goods into the product line. Such products decrease the use of raw materials for framing and filling and cut transportation influence and volume to about 15% of that of conservative furniture;

Dropping the use of chromium for metal outside action.

Using wood from correctly handled forests that replant and continue biological variety.

using only recyclable materials for flat packaging and “pure” (non-mixed) materials for packaging to assist in recycling.[7]

introducing rental bicycles with trailers for customers in Denmark.[39]

6. Legal Factors

Many kind government legislations and policies have a direct contact on the act of Ikea. For example, government recommended an enforceable Code of Practice should be set up forbidding many of the present practices, such as demanding payments from suppliers and changing agreed prices in retrospect or without notice (Mintel Report, 2004). The company of powerful competitors with well-known brands creates a threat of strong price wars and strong needs for product separation. The government’s policies for domination controls and decrease of buyers’ power can limit entry to this sector with such controls as license requirements and limits on entrance to raw materials (Mintel Report, 2004; Myers, 2004). IKEA Marketing Mix Analysis

Find Out How UKEssays.com Can Help You!

Our academic experts are ready and waiting to assist with any writing project you may have. From simple essay plans, through to full dissertations, you can guarantee we have a service perfectly matched to your needs.

View our services

Marketing Mix

1. Price

The price is the amount a customer pays for the product. It is determined by a number of factors including market share, competition, material costs, product identity and the customer’s perceived value of the product. The business may increase or decrease the price of product if other stores have the same product.The price of an item is clearly an important determinant of the value of sales made.

IKEA’s strategy is based on cost leadership. Across markets where it presently has a presence, products are sold at low prices. Prices are 30 to 50% lower than competing products. Price variations are only a result of fluctuations in exchange rates. This penetration pricing enables IKEA to gain significant market share. Low prices are a result of large-quantity purchasing, low-cost logistics, store location in housing areas. IKEA also benefits from economies of scale and healthy supplier-firm relationships. IKEA enters into long-term contracts, provides leased equipment and technical support in exchange for exclusive, low-cost manufacturing from suppliers. For new markets, IKEA should retain its price- image

to maintain the brand’s positioning.

2. Product

IKEA’s value chain is unique in that customers are also suppliers and suppliers are also customers. The transactions between the supplier and IKEA and on to the

customer have a value adding step in each stage. Product differentiation exists in the value-added aspect. IKEA’s consumers are treated as ‘presumes’ with most of its products requiring assembly after purchase. But although assistance in this aspect is limited, IKEA offers options for choosing, transporting and assembling furniture.

While this is well accepted in areas where IKEA now operates, it may be a point of consideration when entering new markets. Should IKEA encounter a market where DIY is not favored, IKEA may include the cost of the service to the product’s price.

3. Position/Place

‘Place’ is concerned with different types of transporting and storing goods, and then making them available for the customer. Getting the right product to the right place at the right time involves the distribution system. IKEA stores are located in housing areas. This is a factor in the achievement of IKEA’s low pricing. While it may appear as a disadvantage, this fits IKEA’s target market of customers willing to transport their own purchases and requiring less assistance in meeting.

4. Promotion

Promotion is a way to set up business of communication with customer. This will give information which helps them to take decision to purchase a product or service. Ikea’s promotions were based on selected marketing conditions and cultural sensibilities of each country that divers a lot from corner to corner markets. IKEA was present in some countries like Canada, Australia and Germany for over twenty five years while in countries such as the US, Britain and Italy, it had been around for only a little more than a decade. Over the years, IKEA had worked with different advertising agencies to bring out some of the most creative and alternative television spots across the world. Because of this, an IKEA explanation was considered a choice catch as it allowed the agency the freedom to explore some interesting and unexplored ideas.

IKEA newly corresponding up with the makers of well-liked video game The Sims 2 to make a things pack called The Sim’s 2 IKEA home stuff. The game contains many items that can be found in IKEA stores and was released on June 24, 2008 in North America and June 26, 2008 in Europe. It was the 2nd objects set with a foremost brand.

IKEA opened a UK large advertising campaign in September 2007 titled ‘Home is the Most Important Place in the World’ by estate agent signs with the name ‘Not For Sale’ written on them for biger campaign.

A subway train tinted in IKEA style was introduced in Russia in 2008 of November. Four cars were twisted into a mobile showroom of the Swedish devise that had colourful seats and visualize finished, passed passengers until June 6, 2009.

The ticket-free system for London Underground(Oyster Card) are now given with wallets sponsored by IKEA company who also guarantor the tube map.

5. People

To reach a economical benefit to the organization, the company needs to recruit the right stuff and train them properly. Customers make judgments and deliver perceptions of the service based on the employees they interact with. Staff should have the appropriate skills, attitude, and service knowledge to provide the service that customers are paying for. Ikea aim to apply for the Investors in People authorization, which tells customers that staff are taken care off by the company and they are trained to confident standard.

6. process

Ikea complete their all process like strategy process, business development process, customer service process etc. in a very efficient way. They always care about their customer service, their vision and the facilities of their employer that is why the company does their internal and external organisation task very powerfully.

7. Physical evidence

Physical evidence is one of the 7 p’s of provision marketing acting a very important responsibility in service sector company. It deals with final desirable or the display of written evidence. This includes the current system and existing facilities of the company.


In conclusion we can say that the world’s largest home-furnishing retailer IKEA has been increasing sales all around the world by national economical improvement. IKEA main to attract sales as the proportion of countries middle class grows. In the future the size of Ikea’s furniture market will be as big as the whole Europe’s.


Cite This Work

To export a reference to this article please select a referencing stye below:

Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.

Related Services

View all

DMCA / Removal Request

If you are the original writer of this essay and no longer wish to have your work published on UKEssays.com then please: