Furniture & Home FurnishingsThe home furnishings retail industry allows consumers to make their homes truly their own with their very choices of furniture and décor to adorn them. Style, affordability and functionality are the main reasons consumers give for shopping lifestyle furniture stores, such as Ikea, Williams-Sonoma, Crate & Barrel and RH (Restoration Hardware).
Demand for home furnishings is cyclical, influenced by housing starts, as desires to remodel and redesign are not necessary during slow economic times. Demand is also driven by consumer income. Large companies compete through volume purchasing, breadth of products, and effective merchandising and marketing. Small companies focus on a market segment and compete through depth of products and superior customer service. Competition for home furnishing stores includes department stores, mass merchandisers, home improvement stores, furniture makers that have their own stores, and online and mail order retailers.