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How are furniture brands adapting to changing customer preferences post-pandemic?

Last updated :
March 10, 2024
/

minutes read

Flat-Packs & Clicks: The Great Indian Furniture Makeover

Remember when buying furniture meant a weekend trip to your local store, the smell of polished wood, and hours of browsing? Well, the post-pandemic world has flipped the script. Now, the furniture industry is remoulding itself to adapt to changing customer preferences, and we are here to break it down for you.

From Brick & Mortar to Click & Order

The pandemic forced most of us indoors and thus, spurred a dramatic shift in our shopping habits. With safety as the priority, consumers took to online platforms for their furniture needs. In response, traditional furniture brands began transitioning their operations online, and they're not just setting up shop on e-commerce platforms but investing in their own online portals too.

Companies are ensuring that their online customer experience is as close as possible to the offline experience. High-resolution images, 360-degree product views, interactive features to test different finishes and colours, and even augmented reality (AR) tools to 'place' furniture in your home, are becoming increasingly common.

Sustainability in Focus

As young Indians become more environmentally conscious, they are choosing brands that reflect their values. Furniture brands have taken note, of investing in sustainable raw materials, recyclable packaging, and low-impact manufacturing processes. Flat-pack furniture, a concept popularised by IKEA, is gaining popularity due to its eco-friendly and cost-effective aspects.

Moreover, the 'rental furniture' market has been burgeoning, catering to the urban, mobile population who prefer not to invest in furniture that they might not need in a few years. Companies like Furlenco and Pepperfry have made significant strides in this market, offering flexible rental plans and a wide range of stylish, sustainable options.

Local Sourcing and Artisanal Craftsmanship

Young Indians are developing a taste for artisanal, locally-sourced furniture, appreciating the uniqueness, quality, and story behind each piece. Recognising this, brands are collaborating with local artisans and promoting 'Made in India' products. This not only helps in preserving and promoting traditional craftsmanship but also enables quicker delivery times due to reduced dependencies on imports.

Affordable Luxury

The line between luxury and affordable furniture is blurring. Brands are focusing on offering high-quality, well-designed pieces at competitive prices. They're achieving this through direct-to-consumer sales, cutting out middlemen, and passing the savings on to customers. Moreover, easy EMI options and attractive warranty policies are adding to the appeal.

Personalisation

Today’s customers seek personalisation - the ability to influence the design, size, or colour of their furniture. Brands are responding by offering customisable options and even co-creation platforms where customers can design their own furniture.

Conclusion

The furniture industry in India is undergoing a transformation, adapting to post-pandemic consumer preferences. The shift towards online shopping, focus on sustainability, appreciation for local craftsmanship, demand for affordable luxury, and personalisation are shaping the future of this industry.

The pandemic has been a catalyst for change, forcing furniture brands to rethink their strategies. However, it's evident that these adaptations are not just about surviving the pandemic, they're about thriving in the future.

As we move forward, one can only imagine how these trends will further evolve and what new disruptions we can expect in the Indian furniture market.

Now, what about you? Have you noticed these changes? How has your furniture shopping experience changed in the post-pandemic world? Let's keep this conversation going. Share this article with your friends and let's see what they have to say!

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