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IKEA marketing strategy

The IKEA vision, business idea and market positioning statement provide a framework for all IKEA marketing communication worldwide.

The IKEA vision is "To create a better everyday life for the many people."

Our business idea is "To offer a wide range of well designed, functional home furnishing products at prices so low that as many people as possible will be able to afford them."

Our market positioning statement is "Your partner in better living. We do our part, you do yours. Together we save money."

By communicating the content of this framework and encouraging customers to experience the IKEA concept, we are building the IKEA brand. The IKEA brand is the sum total of the emotional and rational values that consumers associate with the IKEA tradesmark and the reputation of our company. The brand image is the result of over 50 years work by IKEA co-workers at all levels all over the world.

What we do, what we say, the products we offer, the price we offer them at, the presentation of our range and the information we provide our customers all contribute to our image. The overall task of IKEA marketing communication is to build the IKEA brand and inspire people to come to the stores.

The IKEA concept builds on a relationship with the consumer. Nine key messages are used within the IKEA marketing communication to build this relationship and give an understanding of how we can fulfil our customers needs. These are briefly described below.

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the IKEA concept is based on the market positioning statement. "We do our part" focuses on our commitment to product design, consumer value and clever solutions. By using inexpensive materials in a novel way and minimising production, distribution and retail costs, our customers benefit from low prices.

the IKEA product range is developed to be extensive enough to have something that appeals to everyone and to cover all functions in the home. The products are modern not trendy so they are practical enough for everyday use.

IKEA is the home furnishing specialist. IKEA products are functional and appealing, and enable many people to improve their home life through practical solutions to everyday problems.

low price is not appealing unless it represents good value for money. This is where IKEA is able to make a real difference. IKEA is committed to having a good relationship with our suppliers and so we are able to purchase good quaility, economically produced designs that are bought in bulk to keep costs down. By making all our furniture flat packed we cut down on transportation and assembly costs.


IKEA products are based on a functional approach to design. IKEA design means products that are attractive, practical and easy to use. They don't have unnecessary features, they give genuine solutions for specific home furnishing needs and are made of the most suitable materials for their purpose.

the right quality

The quality of a product must be appropriate for the intended use. For example there is no need for an expensive back panel on a bookcase if a less expensive alternative does a good a job as long as the bookshelf is used for the purpose it was intended for. IKEA products are subjected to rigorous tests to make sure that they meet national and international safety standards.

convenient shopping

The IKEA store offers "everything under one roof", most of it available for immediate take-away. IKEA offers service where you need it, but allows customers to make most of the decisions themselves. This means that we need to make it easy to choose the right products by displaying them correctly, describing them accurately and having a simple returns policy.

a day out for the whole family

IKEA aim to look after our customers by planning for their needs. Not only do we provide inspiration and ideas, but we also encourage people to touch, feel and use the products on display to see how they would fit into their own home. We have new products arriving all the time, seasonal themes, play areas for children, special events and a great value family restaurant.

Swedish IKEA,
The key IKEA messages all have their roots in the Swedish origin of IKEA. Swedish furniture is light and fresh yet unpretentious. The warm welcoming Swedish style has become a model of simplicity, practicality, and informality that is now world renown.

the IKEA marketing mix
IKEA has a long tradition in marketing communication focusing primarily on printed media which has proven it's values and success to the company over the years. Other media now being used to an increasing degree include TV, radio, and internet based communication.

The IKEA marketing mix consists of 4 different areas of focus.

the IKEA product range is our starting point. All other marketing communication is used to amplify the product range.

the store is the IKEA retailers primary medium for presenting and communicating the range, it's low price and the IKEA concept.

the IKEA catalogue is the main marketing tool with around 70% of of the annual marketing budget being spent on this alone. It is produced in 38 different editions, in 17 languages for 28 countries. 110 million catalogues were circulated last year - three times higher than that of the Bible, with 13 million of these being available in the UK.

the IKEA advertising, PR and other types of communication are complements to the IKEA range, store and catalogue are used to spearhead the penetration of our target market.

the UK marketing department

IKEA advertising in the UK is intended to raise awareness of the IKEA brand and drive traffic to the stores. Some people love our unique style of retail advertising , some hate it, but everyone who sees our advertising has a strong opinion and subsequently it provokes conversation and debate. Despite having some of the most controvertial television advertising campaigns in the UK, we have raised awareness of our brand, let people know we are different to other home furnishing companies and most importantly increased sales. The advertising department includes all aspects of advertising and brand communication from television advertising and sponsorship to magazine and radio promotions. Advertising is used to support many different areas of the business including brand awareness, store themes, catalogue drops and store openings.

brand research

To remain at the forefront of a changing market we need as much research on customers, the home furnishing sector and our competitors, as possible. Many different areas of market research, reports and statistics both internal and external are taken into consideration when planning any communication or marketing campaign.

room magazine

This is a European IKEA magazine that is available in all stores in Europe. It is also mailed out to 150,000 IKEA Home Card holders in the UK. It contains lifestyle features on IKEA customers and how they live, product news, and tips and ideas for the home. Similarly to the catalogue, this is produced centrally, but each country has control of a number of pages to communicate their country specific messages.

IKEA food services

The IKEA restaurants are important in providing our customers a place to eat and relax while shopping. There are 3 different concepts offering food in IKEA stores in the UK currently. The main restaurant serves meals based on our Swedish heritage, with traditional dishes such as Gravadlax and meatballs with Lingonberry relish. There are also bistro areas which sell localised snacks such as; hot dogs in the UK, baguettes in France, and pizza in Italy. The IKEA Swedish food markets are also in every store and encourage customers to take home a taste of Sweden. The wide range of traditional Swedish foods helps customers understand our Swedish origins and also lives up to our low price promise.

internet is the global site where you have an overview of IKEA as a company. From the glodal site it is possible to access all local sites. One of the main tasks of the internet is to display product information and availability which is updated constantly. Background information about the company and store information is also crucial. Each store also has their own space with contact details and directions, events, speacial offers and local information.

communication and interior design

Com-in are a "unique" resource who work actively to secure our competitive advantage through the development of the IKEA retail concept and the store as a media. All Com-in specialists are from either an interior design background or visual merchandising, and are responsible for the presentation or our product offers using all current range presentation medias and techniques. The Com-in department gives the store inspiration and vitality and works closely with the store sales and logictics teams to ensure our customers always see something new and exciting, and want to come back again and again.

public relations

The primary concern of this function is to protect the IKEA corporate identity but also to communicate our vision, business idea, brand values, concept and trademarks. By informing journalists of news and information within IKEA through press releases, website information, catalogue distribution and product launches, we are able to communicate with a huge audience through their readers.

The overall identity of IKEA is based in Småland, historically and thrift are strong characteristics of the region and it's people. All IKEA policies live up to this standard from the products we sell to our internal travel and recruitment procedures.

All areas of the IKEA marketing department work together to give consistent messages to our customers and strengthen our brand identity. By focusing on communicating the key messages of the IKEA concept, our vision and business idea we can work together to create our vision of " a better everyday life for the many people."

fact sheets

printable facts about IKEA.

The IKEA catalogue
How IKEA creates it's low prices
How IKEA is organised
IKEA products are manufactured all over the world
The right quality for IKEA products
IKEA provides solutions for all domestic needs
IKEA stores - everything under one roof
Distribution - from supplier to store
The values that characterise IKEA

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