The answer to this question can be found in the April 13, 2016 Economic Roundup published by Furniture Today.
This is the leading publication for the furniture industry. I have re-printed it below:
The Internet. Much discussed, decried and denied, it is now an intrinsic part of consumers’ furniture purchase path.
By any and every metric the influence of the Internet grows daily and paralleling that growth is the integration of smartphones into consumer lifestyles.
In 2010, only 5% of consumers used a smartphone to shop for furniture online, according to usage patterns of Premiere online marketing solutions and website design for furniture retailers’s furniture store retailers.
As of 2015, that number had reached 52% of shoppers, and it’s only going to continue trending upward.
Online research is an integral part of consumers’ shopping journey with 76% of upholstery buyers, 69% of case goods buyers and 71% of area rug buyers saying they conduct research online.
Even when looking at products consumers say they would NEVER buy online, the Internet’s pervasiveness is evident.
For example, 45% say they would never buy upholstery online and the reasons seem obvious – size, shipping costs, the ability to test comfort-but the flip side is more than half (55%) are not of that opinion.
In case goods it’s only 21% of consumers who would “never” buy online; in area rugs 12%, wall décor 9%, lamps and lighting 7%.
You get the idea. This is not to say that brick and mortar is dead, instead it’s to say that the Internet must be a part of any brick and mortar success strategy.
Editor in Chief, Furniture Today
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