The statistics are in, and consumers have spoken high hopes despite the weighty words of “economic recession” that have become an American culture catch phrase. Casual Living magazine teamed up with HGTV to produce the 2010 Outdoor Furniture Survey, sponsored by our friends at Pride Family Brands. This exclusive survey is based on the responses of more than 9,000 U.S. consumers via an online questionnaire from April 2010. It examines main casual furniture topics like conversation groups, product selection and service, imported furniture, and the industry as a whole. We are happy to report there is a good deal of positivity in the data and interpretations from the study. We’ve seen people in the industry making some pretty tough adjustments at times but also becoming more creative and purposeful when it comes to marketing and selling products for patios, decks, porches, pool areas, sunrooms, etc. We’ve posted what we think are some of the survey’s high points.
- 29% of surveyed consumers planned to buy conversation groups this year while 37% plan to do so in 2011.
- The most popular places that consumers listed to shop for these groups included home improvement centers, discount department stores and casual furniture specialty stores…mostly noting these places for their convenience and low prices.
- $1,000 – $1,999 is the most popular price bracket that consumers chose when asked how much they expected to pay for conversation group seating.
Product Selection and Service:
- 59% of the survey’s respondents would prefer to buy less expensive outdoor furniture so they later can change it and be more flexible.
- The remaining 41% prefer to spend more because the purchase is viewed as an investment.
- Colors in which consumers are most interested: Browns, Black, Metallics for furniture frames. Greens, Browns, Blues for cushions. Browns, Greens, Neutrals for slings.
- Top 5 countries for the source of U.S. imported outdoor furniture and principal products (in 2009): China, Canada, Indonesia, Mexico, and Taiwan
To read all the reports online, simply click this link http://bit.ly/hie5Ds. Comments, thoughts and questions are welcome! In closing, let all of us in the industry make creative strides to proactively market our products and services in new and fresh ways. We stand the chance to continue increasing the positive numbers in the industry during 2011, but this won’t happen without new types of marketing strategy…mixed with a small measure of risk. What are you trying that is new for 2011?
~ Sarah Kate