By Ron Cooper
Director of Sales and Marketing
Profit Management Promotions
The economic pundits are predicting better times ahead in 2011. Great news! But for furniture retailers, the market mayhem we witnessed in the last few years has irrevocably changed our industry.
Major market shifts have included the explosion of new choices consumers have for purchasing home furnishings (i.e., Big Box Stores, the growing national chains, closeout stores, independent outlets, and web retailers), as well as the changing attitudes of today’s value-oriented consumers, who are unwilling to overpay and who are less concerned with buying products in prestigious “brand name” outlets.
Consider these the “macro” changes that have affected all furniture retailers. Yet store owners need to understand how these forces are affecting their businesses at the local or “micro” level. Every business is different. Every market is different. That’s why every furniture seller needs to assess and address the broad industry challenges that have reshaped our industry – and then act accordingly. For some, it will require a wholesale shift in retailing strategies. For others, it will mean fine-tuning business re-positioning approaches that have already been put in place. One thing is certain: some level of strategic change will be required for 2011. It’s up to each store owner to determine how much is necessary depending on their particular situation.
Today’s take-away: Look at how the major “macro” market forces have impacted your business at the local level. Factor these key shifts into your action plan for 2011.
Ron Cooper is director of sales and marketing for Profit Management Promotions – one of the nation’s leading sales promotion firms serving the home furnishings industry. Established in 1985, the company is headquartered in Jamison, Pennsylvania, and maintains regional offices in New York, New Jersey, and North Carolina.
About Ron Cooper & Profit Management Promotions: Ron Cooper is director of sales and marketing for Profit Management Promotions – one of the nation’s leading sales promotion firms serving the home furnishings industry. Established in 1985, the company is headquartered in Jamison, Pennsylvania, and maintains regional offices in New York, New Jersey, and North Carolina.
Editor’s Note: Cooper and PMP will hold a seminar at the Las Vegas Market Show on business planning: Monday, January 24 at 1:30 p.m.
Furniture World is the oldest, continuously published trade publication in the United States. It is published for the benefit of furniture retail executives. Print circulation of 20,000 is directed primarily to furniture retailers in the US and Canada. In 1970, the magazine established and endowed the Bernice Bienenstock Furniture Library (www.furniturelibrary.com) in High Point, NC, now a public foundation containing more than 5,000 books on furniture and design dating from 1620. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.