population ages (p. 500). Baby boomer generally desire quality, value their time, and appreciate
convenience more so than saving a few dollars (p. 500). There are a lot less young consumers
which IKEA targets than there are baby boomers who look for furniture elsewhere due to IKEA’s
inconvenience (p. 500).
Because U.S. consumers are not highly responsive to catalog marketing, IKEA methods of
promotion are less efficient and cost-effective for the U.S. market (Ferrell and Hartline, 2014, p.
499). IKEA’s television commercials are unknown outside of the United Kingdom and many of
its ads are controversial and not suitable for a U.S. audience (p. 499). Many of the items shown
on the company’s website cannot be order online which forces customers to shop in stores (p.
499). However, the company’s physical presence in the U.S. market is small (p. 499). With the
company’s image being so important to developing and maintaining customer relationships in the
U.S. market, all of these things create issues for IKEA.
Caldwell, W. (2015). 4 Ways IKEA – St. Louis Stands Out From Your Favorite Stores.
Money Magazine Saint Louis.
Retrieved September 1, 2016, from
Ferrell, O. C., & Hartline, M. D. (2014). Marketing Strategy: Text and Cases (6th ed.). Mason,
OH: SouthWestern/Cengage Learning.
Lu, C. (2014). IKEA Supply Chain Process – How Does IKEA Manage its Inventory.
Retrieved September 1, 2016, from -
Speculate on what might happen at IKEA stores as they are tailored to fit tastes in local
U.S. markets. Is the company’s trade-off of service for low cost sustainable in the long
I foresee a variety of changes occurring at IKEA stores as they are tailored to fit tastes in local
U.S. markets. There are two key issues regarding expansion into the U.S. that IKEA must
address (Ferrell and Hartline, 2014, p. 496). The need to adapt to preferences of U.S. consumers
is the first (p. 496). Due to the fact that American consumers are very demanding and tend to
reward marketers that go out of their way to address individual needs and tastes, IKEA will have
to adapt its offerings and stores to local tastes (p. 496). This will be a significant shift away from
the company’s cost-conscious operating philosophy as it will be much more expensive (p. 496).
It is highly likely that IKEA will hire local employees that represent the same values, cultures,
and lifestyles of the local areas in which its stores are located (p. 496). IKEA will also alter its
promotional television commercials that are currently too edgy in the eyes of American viewers
Quality is the second key issue (Ferrell and Hartline, 2014, p. 496). Since American consumers
demand quality products, IKEA’s low-cost, do-it-yourself misses the mark for many potential
furniture consumers in the United States (p. 496). Self-assembled furniture is oftentimes viewed
by Americans as being lower in quality and considered to be comparable to furniture sold by
Target and Walmart (p. 497). The majority of American customers like convenience and typically