The difficulty of creating middle-of-the-road furniture for consumers is the reason that independent manufacturers struggle to succeed. In the United States, for example, there is no middle ground between Ikea items and Crate and Barrel pieces. The high production costs of these big-name companies also lead consumers to have unrealistic expectations for the price of furniture. That’s why many people make the mistake of choosing an Ikea-type chair when they want something more elegant and expensive.
Rather than producing the furniture locally, manufacturers import the majority of their products. In recent years, this industry has been especially hard hit by shipping and manufacturing challenges. The cost of ocean freight shipping has quadrupled since the pandemic in the early ’80s, and the European Union has imposed restrictions on international freight. Weather-related railroad disruptions and a shortage of truck drivers have only compounded the problems. However, it is possible to find furniture that meets the high standards of EN 1730.
The furniture industry is highly fragmented, and the prices have dropped significantly. Traditional big-box retail furniture companies have a hard time reaching people. In fact, their marketing strategies rely on TV and local newspaper ads. This means that consumers don’t know where to find a bargain. Thankfully, there are countless alternatives for cheap furniture. Fortunately, Ashley Furniture is the largest seller of residential furnishings. You can get quality, affordable furniture without compromising on style or comfort.
Modern furniture production techniques have become cheaper and more efficient. Today, the same materials used for centuries to create large-scale furniture are used. In addition to using timber as the basis, manufacturers also use heat, glue, and shredding techniques to create semi-manufactured wood. More modern furniture factories use plywood, veneer, and carcass wood for their products. Whether your furniture is made of hardwood, plastic, or veneer, you can trust that it will last for years.
Despite its importance, the furniture industry is often a large importer of its products. Due to the difficulty of importing goods, the industry has been hit particularly hard by shipping and manufacturing challenges. The cost of ocean freight shipping has doubled in a single year, while restrictions related to pandemics have caused freight rates to plummet. Moreover, the shortage of truck drivers has further slowed the flow of furniture. And this has resulted in increased costs for many companies.
The furniture business is booming, with home sales and work-from-home arrangements driving the growth. This industry is one of the few areas in the economy that is growing at an impressive rate. And the furniture business has been a ray of light in an otherwise gloomy landscape. In April alone, Americans spent $11.3 billion on furniture. That’s a 12 percent increase from a year ago. The overall retail market has grown just 34 percent since April, and the furniture industry is a shining example of this trend.