barometer national release web


Published on releases a comprehensive 3 month study into consumer behaviour and spending, based on data from the UK's biggest home design website.

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  1. 1. Embargoed: 00:01 Thursday 4th November 2010 Images, this full release and info graphics available here: 60,000 searches for gold wallpaper, cushions, throws and corner sofas highlights a nation seeking sanctuary in the home says People are shopping more for their homes, but spending less on each purchase. The number of purchases was up 20% in Q3 over Q2 2010 London, Thursday 4th November 2010: has today released the findings of its quarterly snapshot into consumer shopping habits for the home. The findings reveal a nation seeking cushions, comfort, inspiration and gold wallpaper, but the trends are not uniform across the UK. The average spend per purchase has fallen 14% this quarter, compared to Q2 2010. However, the total number of purchases is up by 20% over the same period, showing that consumers are buying more but spending less on each purchase. The number of individual transactions for Q3 is up 140% in 2010 vs 2009. design director, Pia Munden, said: “We live in changing times and so a little bit of comfort, even luxury can make all the difference to people. We are seeing an increasing number of people spending and updating the property they are in rather than moving and so some of the trends we are highlighting today will be a result of that nesting behaviour.” But spending has been on very specific items. For example in the past three months there were 60,000 searches for wallpaper; 5,000 for gold wallpaper and 4,500 for rose flocked wallpaper. Searches for cushions, throws and over 3,500 for chandeliers
  2. 2. indicate a nation making home a little more luxurious. Overall, consumers are looking for smaller items rather than large purchases. offers the widest range of furniture and homewares available anywhere online, as well as a number of innovative creative tools for inspirational, and practical, home design. The website allows shoppers to search over 1,500 retailers offering more than three million products - from recognised high street names through to small boutique designers and all points in between. This means is a truly independent commentator on the interior design landscape, providing a balanced view of shopping trends. Arriving at the findings examined more than 10,000 on-line conversations, 1.6 million internet searches, 2.6 million keywords and 1,500 retailers to create ‘The interiors shopping barometer’. The research headlines at a glance:  People are shopping more, but spending less on each purchase.  Number of home purchases up 20% in Q3 over Q2, 2010. o Average spend per transaction down 14% in Q3 over Q2 o Number of purchases for the home up 140% in 2010 over the same period, 2009  The room most people are seeking inspiration for is the living room, with 26% of visitors who shopped or researched by room looking for ideas for their living room.  The brands who have seen the biggest surge in interest over the past three months are: The White Company, BHS and Barker and Stonehouse.  The most popular product searched for was wallpaper, registering 60,000 individual searches, with specific trends for gold wallpaper (5,000 searches) and for rose flocked wallpaper (4,500 searches).  received 3.3 million unique visits from 2.6 million unique visitors between July 1 and September 30 2010. The most researched rooms: (July 1 through September 30, 2010) Living room 26% Bedroom 25% Kitchen 12% Bathroom 11% Dining room 8%
  3. 3. Garden/outdoor 6% Home office 5% Children’s room 5% Nursery 2% The brand movers and shakers: (up 79 places to 47th most popular) (up 56 places to 15th most popular) (up 54 places to 37th most popular) (up 41 places to 23rd most popular) (up 38 places to 69th most popular) The most interior design conscious cities are: (Visits between July 1 through September 30, 2010) Top 10 Town/City Visits London 960,249 Manchester 112,652 Birmingham 91,425 Glasgow 65,364 Edinburgh 49,954 Sheffield 38,531 Leeds 33,016 Bristol 30,781 Belfast 20,958 Southampton 20,465 Bottom two major towns/locations: Town/City Visits Southsea 9 Cleethorpes 2 Most popular search terms: (July 1 through September 30, 2010) Search Term 1 Wallpaper 2 Photo album 3 Rooms 4 Table 5 Sofa 6 Coffee table 7 Dining table 8 Clocks 9 Table lamps 10 Wardrobe
  4. 4. This quarter’s headlines and commentary All commentary attributable to Pia Munden,’s Design Director. People are shopping more, but spending less on each transaction “People are shopping for their homes again, but they’re careful about how much they spend. The average spend per purchase has dropped in Q3 2010 by 42% compared to the same period last year, but the number of sales is up by 140%. People are buying more frequently, and perhaps more spontaneously – unlike last year when the credit crunch restricted purchases and people were splurging very rarely on one or two big items for the home.” The room most people are seeking inspiration for is the living room “As you would expect, we see fluctuations in the most researched rooms in the home driven in part by seasonality. It’s interesting to note that living rooms and bedrooms have been significantly more researched (with 26% and 25% of all visits respectively) than kitchens (12%) and bathrooms (11%). To me this indicates that people are keen to improve their homes but are focusing on the most used rooms in the home; they’re not planning a major overhaul of the kitchen or bathroom – traditionally the rooms which top the makeover wish list – because whilst improving these rooms adds value, it requires significant expenditure. We’re seeing people’s desire to nest and improve their home without splashing out on expensive projects.” The biggest brand movers are: The White Company, BHS and Barker and Stonehouse “We see seasonality driving and influencing this, along with the season’s must-have product or bargain. But similarly we see a long-term trend towards consumers mixing both high street, high-end and boutique items when it comes to items for the home. It isn’t just high street giants who appear at the top of the table; we’re seeing niche brands like The White Company and Barker and Stonehouse with massively increased popularity this quarter. We love this trend toward people shopping with established and small retailers and recently launched the mydeco boutique to offer visitors exactly this choice.” Looking to the future – consumer spending over the Christmas period “This year due to the looming VAT increase in January many retailers are going into sale very early, with some even slashing prices on high ticket pieces as early as November. It's a great opportunity for consumers to make cut price 'expensive' purchases before the usual flurry of January discounts. This will, of course, impact January spending, which will be slower than in previous years.” Looking to the future – Christmas trends “Key themes this Christmas will largely divide in to four categories, which we’re terming ‘retro glam’, ‘burlesque’, ‘modern Scandinavian’ and ‘classic fairytale’. Evocative names which speak of lashings of opulence, sparkle and comfort in the home this Christmas. Burlesque is a particular favourite; purples, mauves and rich inky shades from mids to dark. Subtle patterns with glossy finishes and lots of decadent, luxury fabrics and ribbons such as velvets and sheers. Modern Scandinavian favours a clean, crisp and festive look – detailing is fresh and bold and colours are kept simple, with lots of red and white.”
  5. 5. -ENDS- For more information: Paul Doran, Switch Communications: 07768 373 100 Hayley Buery, Switch Communications: 07545 178 006 About the research and barometer methodology The barometer draws insights from 10,000 online conversations, 1.6 million searches, 2.6 million keywords, 1,500 retailers and commentary from’s own legendary Design Board, which includes Sir Terence Conran, Kelly Hoppen, Philippe Starck and other highly respected names. About was founded by the management team behind, one of Europe's most successful ever online businesses. brings together more than three million homeware products from over 1,500 UK retailers. From high-end to high street, mass market to niche, enables consumers to find what they are looking for, for their home, without having to trawling the high street. Key website features include: Shopping: Search the UK's most comprehensive database of over three million home products by price, discount, colour or dimension. Over 1,500 retailers in one easy-to- search online website. 3D room planner: View 200,000 3D room designs and build a virtual model of your room using an easy-to-use tool, and choose from over 75,000 3D pieces of furniture, wallpaper, paints and flooring to visualise how your room will look. iPhone application: the first app to enable iPhone users to visualise a piece of furniture in any room. You can add hundreds of 3D models of furniture to your photo while on the move! Community: Share creative ideas, ask questions and get expert advice from over 150,000 members simply by registering on Trends and inspiration: Get the latest news from the interiors world, read features and trend watching advice, and browse hundreds of inspiring home images.