January 3, 2021

Ikea to stop printing paper catalogue


After more than 70 years of printing, Ikea has decided to stop publishing its paper catalogue.

The Swedish furniture giant said in a news release Monday that it will focus on an all-digital listing of its wares.

“Times are changing,” the company said in the statement. “Ikea is transforming its business model to become more accessible and digital, while embracing new ways to connect with more people.”

At its peak in 2016, more than 200 million copies of the catalogue were printed every year around the world, in 32 different languages for the 50 different countries that have Ikea stores.

But media consumption and customer behaviours have evolved, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. “Customer behaviour and media consumption have changed, and the Ikea catalogue has been less used,” the chain said. Online sales grew more than 41 per cent in Canada last year, the chain said. The chain had 22.9 million visitors to its stores and 178.4 million online in Canada.

The growing shift to buying and selling online has made the catalogue less useful to drive sales, so as a result, the 2021 catalogue which was released this past summer, will be the last.

The move do to away with the catalogue is part of the chain’s broader environmental push, which has seen the retailer try to reduce its carbon footprint, and start selling used furniture as a way to extend their life.

 



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