While practically every retail sector has dealt with at least one major disruptor in recent years, the furniture and interior industry hasn’t seen any great shake-ups since Ikea. That is, at least, until Made.com appeared on the scene and rewrote the rules.
With a ground-breaking business model – no middlemen, no stocks, (initially) no shops, crowdsourced design, manufacture on demand straight from the factory, prices up to 70% lower for similar items, two new collections every week à la fast fashion – and especially with their revolutionary store concept (since 2015), Made.com really sets the tone for a new reality in the furniture industry.
The best of all worlds
As soon as you walk into the store on Charing Cross Road in London, you’re invited to pick up one of the available iPads. This allows you to easily collate your own personal online wish list or shopping list from the products in the store, which all have NFC tags.
Only a handful of products are physically in the store; other items are “mapped” on the walls and floors using projectors – in different settings, from living room to bedroom. This gives you the advantage of experiencing the entire product range, albeit virtually, on the relatively limited floor space of the store itself.
If you want to get a real look and feel of your favourite items, the store has an enormous wall featuring samples of all the different fabrics and colours, ready for you to feel and even to take home with you for a better perspective.
Ordering and payment are done completely online. You can do it from the iMacs in the store, from the couch at home or from wherever you happen to be at the time. Made.com collects all orders of the week, has them manufactured on demand and sends them to the customers’ homes straight from the factory.
What makes this retailer brilliant?
Thanks to a completely new business model – with minimum overheads, minimum wastage and maximum customer value – and wonderfully innovative omnichannel stores that form a perfect link between physical and online, Made.com is giving the furniture and interior industry a new impulse.
Soon in the Netherlands and undoubtedly also in other European countries.