IKEA aims to better every customer’s life through better service, speedy delivery, unique products and more while implementing technology at each level
IKEA UAE, a member of the Al-Futtaim group of companies, offers an extensive range of home furnishing products and accessories of good design, value and functionality. In the UAE for 30 years, the large format IKEA stores are in Dubai Festival City, Festival Plaza in Jebel Ali, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi and small-format stores in Al Wahda Mall, Abu Dhabi and Al Bawadi Mall, Al Ain. These closely follow the popular self-serve and self-assembly concept which was conceived in Sweden over half a century ago. IKEA serves a wide choice of refreshments at the IKEA Restaurant and Café.
Progressing with tech
Digital technologies have completely changed the way life is lived. IKEA not only wants to create a better everyday life for people but also convert every visit into an experience. Its stores are equipped with new and improved digital solutions to help enhance the customer’s shopping experience.
Home planning wall projectors
These allow customers to be able to easily visualise products in their home and make decisions around elements including rug sizes and mattress selection. They can project the required rug size on the floor and place furniture on it, giving them a real-time experience. There are approximately 16 planners built across the store in various locations. Throughout the main showroom, digital signage and projector solutions installed provide customers with information about the range of products available and serve as a guide through the store.
Self-ordering terminals and self-service kiosks at the IKEA Restaurant and Swedish food market improve service, speed and customer satisfaction.
Remote planning and interior design services
Keeping up with the market needs, IKEA launched an online home planning and interior design service wherein its consultants help customers create the perfect room setting and choose the right product design that suits their needs and style. The platform offers a free digital consultation from IKEA’s experts for kitchen, wardrobe and storage space planning. The interior design services lets customers have a one-on-one conversation with a professional to help make the perfect home.
The two most important trends for online retailers today are mobile e-commerce and personalisation. IKEA will continue to develop and optimise its home furnishing offers digitally, making them relevant and providing a tailored online experience for its consumers to choose and buy with ease.
IKEA Mobile App
On the IKEA Mobile app, the following functionalities were added with a focus on providing convenience and a seamless experience for its customers.
See the IKEA offer (e.g. product availability)
Scan products, including local product combinations
Choose selected products and services
Pay for the selected products and services as one order
Complete a transaction with a few clicks
Click and Collect
The Click and Collect service allows customers across the country to collect their online purchases conveniently from the comfort of their cars. Shoppers can follow three simple steps and benefit from the service.
> Choose their preferred collection time and place.
> Receive an email and SMS confirmation once the order is ready for collection.
> Pick-up the order from an IKEA store on the same or next day, right from their car.
IKEA is working towards offering new levels of convenience for its online consumers by providing the best customer services, speedy delivery, quality installation, hygienic packaging, payment options (cash on delivery/card), an easy return policy and value-for-money products and services.
IKEA home visits
IKEA conducts home visit interviews locally to get a deeper understanding of life at home — how people live, what challenges they have and what they dream of for their homes. Insights gained from these interviews are used to create home furnishing solutions inside the store that meet and exceed the needs and dreams of people in the local market.
Co-create with IKEA
IKEA is curious about the future and believes that good ideas can come from anywhere. With co-createIKEA, IKEA wants to explore the future together with people, and democratise its product development. IKEA will start to look into five different modules of co-createIKEA; product ideas, university collaborations, innovation labs, makerspace and start-ups. The first one, co-create product ideas, is where IKEA will invite many people to co-create products and the upcoming range.
UAE is a melting pot of many nationalities with different tastes. Knowledge about people and the way they live in the local market helps IKEA create market-relevant solutions. People relate better to IKEA home furnishing when they recognise that the solutions are based on an understanding of their needs and the way they want to live, including their traditions, habits and living conditions.
A pool of extremely talented inhouse local IKEA interior designers and visual merchandisers carefully analyse the findings from home visit interviews and then use the insights to provide inspirational and relevant home furnishing solutions that reflect the IKEA Brand. Offering solutions based on an in-depth knowledge of life at home in the local market helps IKEA differentiate from its competitors.
In 2020, there was a general growth across office furniture, children’s furniture, and accessories. As most people were working and studying from home, many did not have proper chairs or tables that enabled them to work or study for long hours, in a healthy and beautiful space. The pandemic also saw a shift in cooking habits, resulting in an increase in sales of kitchen utensils. Many people also updated their home décor.
The future for IKEA in the region
2020 has seen a change in consumer shopping behaviour; homes are small, space is shared, life is busy. IKEA aims to move close to people’s homes and meet their need for convenience and accessibility. The company wants to give people the IKEA experience they expect with products and solutions that cater to their everyday life. Late last year, IKEA announced its new store opening in Al Wahda Mall, which took it closer to people in Abu Dhabi. Recently, it opened its second store in Egypt. IKEA is also planning something special for its customers in Muscat with a new store planned for opening in 2022. 2021 is going to be even more special as IKEA celebrates 30 years of being in the region. The company has a very strong partnership with Al-Futtaim and is honoured to be a part of their family.
Sustainability and affordability
People want to live healthier and more sustainable lives but they struggle without the knowledge or access to solutions that will help. IKEA wants to create and share solutions that support mental and physical health at home, so it becomes a safe haven for many years to come. Low price is a key part of the IKEA business idea, and it builds this into every product and service it offers, right from the start. For many people, low price is more important than ever, and IKEA expects consumers will continue to be cost-conscious long after the Covid-19 pandemic has ended. IKEA wants to show that it has the right balance between low price, quality, sustainability, form, and function, making its offer a smart choice. Customers can also join the IKEA family loyalty programme to avail of offers and extended services on every visit to the store. The toll-free number for the world-famous brand is 800 4532 (800 IKEA).
For more information visit www.IKEA.ae
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