eMarketer Report on Home Furnishings Sector Sees Strong Ecommerce Growth

Double-digit gains expected 

November 9, 2017

Retail ecommerce sales in the furniture and home furnishings  sector will grow 16.4% this year, reaching $35.95 billion, according to eMarketer.

Growth is expected to continue at a healthy double-digit pace over the next four years, with ecommerce sales in the category topping $62 billion in 2021.

The forecast is part of a new eMarketer report on the sector. eMarketer PRO subscribers can access the full forecast and trend report here. Nonsubscribers can purchase the forecast and report here.

The home furnishings category includes a wide range of goods, from inexpensive, easy-to-ship towels and dishes to major, bulkier purchases like sofas and rugs, which are usually bought with more research and consideration. "Every year, shoppers grow more comfortable with making even these larger purchases digitally," said eMarketer's Krista Garcia, author of the report.

The home goods and furnishings sector is benefiting from millennial shoppers coming of age, Garcia said. This younger group is settling down, decorating homes and bringing their comfort with buying digitally to the category.

"Millennials historically haven’t been buying a lot,"  said Bob Sherwin, vice president of direct marketing at pure-play online retailer Wayfair. "But now we’re seeing they are starting, so we want to stay top of mind with this group.”

It's not just millennials who are comfortable researching home furnishings online. According to a May 2017 GPShopper survey, home decor was the product category US internet users were most likely to research digitally. Some 63% of respondents said they started their product search on desktop or mobile. Since many home decor purchases are carefully considered, this isn’t surprising.