Self and furniture

This Monday Questia Group approaches an insightful research topic regarding consumer attitudes and buying behaviors. Namely, we are interested in how Romanians shop and what does home furniture mean to them. Our research was made through an online survey on our platform www.questia.ro covering 1,150 respondents, with a plus or minus 3% margin of error. The survey was active between the 17th and the 19th of January 2017.

When it comes to home furniture, the topic is more than meets the eye. While not purchased with great frequency, furniture is viewed as central to one’s sense of self. Our study highlights this aspect and much more; as it has as a starting point Ponder’s study - Consumer attitudes and buying behavior for home furniture, 2013. Ponder’s study looks at the need for buying new furniture, influencers of this decision, important evaluative criteria, information sources, brand and store loyalty as well as and cognitive dissonance that may be felt after a purchase are. The study was made in 2013, through an online platform, focusing on the US market.

Our study shares some similarities in some topics but also addresses new ones. These include specific attitudes and behaviors regarding purchasing home furniture.

For instance, most Romanians buy furniture and home decorations once at 6 months to two years: 19.8% less frequent than once every one or two years, and 17.4% once every 6 to 12 months. Some purchase furniture yearly (14.9%) and some once every 1-2 years (14.1%).

Buying furniture

As for the channels, people buy furniture from, the majority buys in store (54.2%). However, 43.7% buy both online and in store and 2.1% buy exclusively online. This shows that even though purchasing furniture implies having a look at the furniture in store there is also an upcoming trend in online shopping.

Channels for buying furniture

Moreover, furniture and home decorations are ways of expressing one’s personality. As seen before, many consumers view their homes and the furniture in them as an extension of themselves, thus this can be considered an emotional purchase (Perry 2007). Therefore, this emotional purchase is closely connected to one’s self-identity and lifestyle ( Ponder, 2013).

Most Romanians admit that they enjoy buying furniture (93.4%). Moreover, 86.3% agree to the fact that the design of their furniture reflects their personality and 85% say that the furniture they buy is actually a form of expression. Thus, furniture is an emotional purchase for many people because it facilitates sharing and a sense of togetherness among friends and family in the home ( Ponder, 2013).

Personality and furniture

As for how consumers search for information, they use a mix for of traditional media – watching TV programs (20.4%) and reading furniture specialized magazines (25.3%) as well as searching online for information (73.7%). Some (26.5%) are also reading blogs and browsing on websites that have furniture information. Brochures, flyers with discounts and promotions are important sources of research (45.1%).

Also, decisions of buying furniture are made democratically: Romanians discuss with their family members and friends before purchasing furniture (65.7%).

Decision for buying furniture

However one’s home is decorated - mid-century modern, industrial, Scandinavian, bohemian, urban modern or vintage – all these styles say something about one’s personality, lifestyle and future memories with friends and families.

Don’t miss Questia’s studies in the following weeks. Find out more about consumer behavior, attitudes and beliefs in regard to numerous topics, from banking to consumer goods, internet, leisure, marketing and retail in real time.