Do we still have a love affair with sofas?

20-01-2010 18:42 (0 comments)

Consumer trends in buying and replacing sofas

Do we still have a love affair with sofas?


Some years ago a leading mass production furniture company offered £325 sofas for £49. Apparently 20 people were hospitalised when the scrum to get one turned violent. Does this suggest we have a love affair with the sofa or just a keen eye for a Bank Holiday bargain?


In 2005 the Daily Telegraph asked its readers whether they were likely to be seduced by bank holiday TV sofa advertisements.


The writer claimed that the sofa advertisement was “a uniquely British phenomenon” during a bank holiday period, one “more certain than rain, traffic jams or charred barbecued chicken”.


Let’s ignore how debatable this suggestion is for a minute and look at some of the facts:


· The average Briton spends 12 years of their life sitting on a sofa.

· In 2006 the British public was expected to buy an estimated quarter of a million sofas at an average price of £1,500 each.

· Qualitas, the furniture industry ombudsman, dealt with 2,295 complaints last year. The most common problems with sofas are poor fabric durability and flattened cushions.

· Mae West inspired one of the world's most famous sofas - Salvador Dali designed it to look like a giant pair of red lips.


Wow, 12 years seems like a long time – and it’s all because “The 30-second commercial for a cut-price settee has become as integral a part of the modern holiday as the television repeat and the service-station queue”. We just can’t help ourselves, particularly when faced with the prospect of sitting on a cheap sofa we can buy on HP.


Luckily the article also talks about other factors which are almost certainly having just as much of an impact on our buying behaviour as cost.


In 2005 we moved house more frequently and the television makeover programme made us “more creative”. The result is that the average Briton was then expected to buy at least seven “sofa sets” in his lifetime, the majority of them in leather.


Families tend to take more of these purchasing decisions together rather than leaving it all up to Mum and Dad. According to one industry expert quoted in the article, “Families plan for a shopping trip in the same way they used to plan for a day trip to the sea. Shopping has become a leisure experience and a sofa is a family purchase”.


Obviously in recent years the credit crunch and the recession have played havoc with the housing market and personal consumption in general. Nobody knows whether we are at long last on the verge of growth again. If so, it might herald a new dawn for sofa sellers. Soon we may know whether we are in love with sofas or merely seasoned bargain hunters after all.

English Leather Sofas provides a wide range of Traditional Chesterfield Leather Sofas, Designer Leather Sofas, Italian leather Sofas and Leather Sofa beds at highly competitive prices.

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