IKEA, founded in 1943 by Ingvar Krampard, is one of the largest furniture stores globally. The company’s headquarters is based in Älmhult, Switzerland (O’Connell, 2020). IKEA’s success can be attributed to the organization’s core values. The values include; promote togetherness, care for people and the planet, be cost-conscious, uphold simplicity, constantly renew and improve innovations, be different but with a purpose, empower people through give-and-take responsibilities, and always lead by example (O’Connell, 2020). These values have influenced the marketing strategies adopted by the company. As such, a look into the company’s social media utilization is necessary to determine the alignment of its strategies to its values.
Social media platforms have enabled various organizations to venture into e-commerce. Currently, IKEA operates 17 Instagram accounts, 46 Facebook pages, 62 Twitter handles, 44 YouTube channels, and one LinkedIn account (Unmetric, 2020). The platforms have enabled IKEA to reach a wide array of customers. Moreover, due to the nature of IKEA’s do-it-yourself (DIYs) products, these platforms enable customers to understand its production processes. While all the five platforms play a significant role in IKEA’s marketing, the Facebook pages have had a huge impact on the company’s popularity. Since the company operates different outlets globally, a Facebook page is created for each country depending on the company’s market share in that country. For example; IKEA’s U.S. Facebook page, https://m.facebook.com/IKEAUSA, has approximately 29 million likes, while that of United Kingdom, https://m.facebook.com/IKEAUK, and Australia, https://m.facebook.com/ikea.au, have 29474372 and 29471626 likes, respectively.
Facebook has helped IKEA to increase its consumer base by promoting customer-centered marketing. Per Unmetric report (2020), the consumers gained in August were 76,328, which equals approximately of 0.26% growth in IKEA’s fan base. Since most potential consumers are not able to access IKEA’s brick-and-mortar stores due to geographical and financial constraints, the use of Facebook to advertise IKEA’s array of products from furniture to kitchen appliances gives such customers an alternative of making online purchases. The incorporation of Facebook as a marketing strategy has enabled IKEA to boosts its popularity in different countries. For instance, between December 2013 and January 2014, IKEA saw the highest increase in visitors aged between 22 and 35 years, with the upsurge representing 31% for ages 22-25 years and 11% for ages 26-35 years (Skeldon, 2014). Hence, Facebook’s incorporation aligns with IKEA’s goal of reaching customers from different age groups regardless of race, geographical location, and language. The platform also enables the company to improve customers’ experiences since the latter can easily and conveniently interact with the company’s officials, as well as review products and rate services. Moreover, due to different Facebook pages, a customer is able to interact with other customers in determining the quality of products.
Due to Facebook’s status as a leading social media platform, IKEA uses the platform to link its other platforms. For example, while a majority of the DIYs furniture assemblies are available on YouTube, the video links are easily found on the company’s Facebook pages. Hence, customers are able to navigate to the other alternative platforms resulting in increased sales. According to Woodman (n.d), the increased in-store visits between December 2013 and January 2014 as a result of Facebook campaigns resulted in 1.4 million impressions, and consequently, a return on investment (ROI) ratio of 6:1. Furthermore, E-commerce contributed 7% of the total annual sales made by IKEA in 2019 (O’Connell, 2020). The figures have steadily been rising as more customers embrace online purchases.
Social media has become a powerful marketing tool for many organizations because different media platforms are used by different groups of customers. As such, the presence of a company on social media not only helps with marketing but also boosts customers’ experiences.
O’Connell, L. (2020). IKEA- Statistics & facts. Retail and Trade. https://www.statista.com/topics/1961/ikea
Skeldon, P. (2014). Facebook mobile ads boost Ikea in-store foot traffic claim EE and Facebook. Internet Retailing. https://internetretailing.net/marketing/marketing/facebook-mobile-ads-boosts-ikea-in-store-foot-traffic-claim-ee-and-facebook
Unmetric. (2020). A deep dive into the social media habits and performances of Ikea. Unmetric. https://unmetric.com/brands.ikea
Woodman, Iwona. (n.d).IKEA: Bringing customers into IKEA using Facebook. Agencies: Vizeum, prospect. Marketing Society. https://www.marketingsociety.com/sites/default/files/IKEA_CASESTUDY2