New Unity Marketing Study Reveals How Marketers of Home Furnishings Goods Can Jump Start their Sales Against Shoppers' Rising Mood of Austerity

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The key for home furnishings marketers is to understand their best customer prospects – the affluent consumer segment – and what kind of products, services and shopping experiences they want and need. Unity Marketing's new Home Luxury Report proves research insights and data that reveal what the affluent home shoppers want.

U.S. Home Furnishings Market, 2004-2013

The affluent consumers (top 20% based upon income) account for nearly half of the total home furnishings market. These are the best prospects for home furnishings marketers.

The Census Department just released retail sales estimates for August 2014. Home furnishings and furniture stores have advanced an estimated 2.6% during the first eight months of 2014 over 2013; This is not the worst results by retailer category, but below the 3.6% retail uptick overall. Yet the home stores only increased a dismal .7% in August over July 2014.

“Reports like this just underscore the mood of austerity that is taking hold among American shoppers,” says Pam Danziger, president of Unity Marketing. “Shoppers are spooked about the economy, even the affluent at the top of the nation’s income pyramid. Fortunately the upper-income consumers have recovered from the recession and have a good handle on their financial status, yet they are still holding back when it comes to spending.”

Home marketers need new insights to help jump-start their best customer prospects.

“The U.S. home furnishings market is a huge $316 billion business, but only in 2013 did it reach pre-recession levels from 2007,” Danziger reports, based upon 2013 data provided by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Unity Marketing recognizes that retailers selling home goods, as well as manufacturers designing products for the home, need new ideas and fresh approaches to stimulate their best customer prospects to buy. According to Danziger, that is the affluent consumers, with incomes over $100,000. Marketers and retailers need the latest insight into:

  • What the affluent are buying for the home?
  • Where they are shopping?
  • What their brand preferences are?
  • Why they buy goods and services for their home?
  • How the latest trends in home-related spending is impacting future growth in the home market?

Those insights and more are contained in Unity Marketing’s new Home Luxury Report: The Six-Year Guide to the Affluent Consumer Market for Home Goods.

Marketers can use the detail data about affluent consumers’ purchases and shopping habits to gain the competitive edge. “Given the current state of the economy and mood of the consumers, the only growth your company will see in the short term must come from stealing share from the competition. Organic growth in the home furnishings market is stalled,” Danziger says.

The detailed research data contained in the Home Luxury Report aims to give marketers the competitive edge. It contains research marketers will use to plan new marketing strategies…find opportunities to expand distribution…develop new pricing models…create strategies to capture share from competitors…be more effective communicating in print media and through social media with the high-value customers that affluents represent.

“The affluent consumers account for nearly half of the total $316 billion home furnishings market,” Danziger reports. “No matter where your brand competes – at the low-end (IKEA, Cost Plus/World Market, Bed Bath & Beyond), at the middle (Pier 1, Pottery Barn, Macy’s) or the high-end (Restoration Hardware/RH, Ethan Allen, Willliams Sonoma, Design Within Reach) or yours is an online etailer that is disrupting the traditional home retail market (One Kings Lane) – your brand and customer is covered in this report. While we call it the Home Luxury Report, the fact is home luxury’s got a brand new style and the affluent customer represents an important customer segment for any home business, including yours.” Danziger concludes.

About Pam Danziger & Unity Marketing

Pamela N. Danziger is an internationally recognized expert specializing in consumer insights for marketers targeting the affluent consumer. She is president of Unity Marketing, a marketing consulting firm she founded in 1992. Pam received the Global Luxury Award for top luxury industry achievers presented at the Global Luxury Forum in 2007 by Harper's Bazaar. Luxury Daily named Pam to its list of "Women to Watch in 2013." She is a member of Jim Blasingame: The Small Business Advocate’s Brain Trust and a contributing columnist to The Robin Report.

Pam's latest book is Putting the Luxe Back in Luxury: How new consumer values are redefining the way we market luxury (Paramount Market Publishing, 2011). Her other books include Shopping: Why We Love It and How Retailers Can Create the Ultimate Customer Experience, published by Kaplan Publishing in October 2006; Let Them Eat Cake: Marketing Luxury to the Masses-as well as the Classes, (Dearborn Trade Publishing, $27, hardcover) and Why People Buy Things They Don't Need: Understanding and Predicting Consumer Behavior (Chicago: Dearborn Trade Publishing, 2004).

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Greg Danziger
Unity Marketing Inc.
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