Best Product Brands 2018 : #1 IKEA

2017 was Ikea’s year, whichever way you look at it. The amazing array of new products and developments only served to increase the Swedish furniture giant’s dominance and supremacy on the furniture market even further. And Belgium was no different in that sense.

Although 2018 started on a sad note for Ikea because the brand’s founder Ingvar Kamprad died, we bet that the group will adapt seamlessly to the impending changes. Ikea, which combines the initials of its founder’s name with the first letters of the name of his parents’ farm (Elmtaryd) and the village where he was born (Agunnaryd), will continue to follow its original strategy, which is all about offering a great consumer experience. “The brand achieved constant growth thanks to the hard work of its teams, shooting up from the sixth place in 2017 to the top spot in 2018”, according to GfK. “There’s no denying that consumer experience is the key to success now that Ikea was elected Best Product Brand.

In 2016, the Swedish furniture giant already demonstrated in the most magnificent manner that it is capable of creating a positive and memorable experience, as seven out of ten people describe their most recent experience with the brand in these terms. Better yet, this significant increase corresponds with the drop in the number of consumers who also described their experience as being memorable, albeit in the negative sense.”

Belgians’ best friend

Ikea is one of the few brands in the 2017 Top 10 ranking which has succeeded in strengthening its customer relationship. The slight increase means the brand is just on the verge of hitting the 80% mark for “strong relations”. That makes it the undisputed leader for this indicator. “As we have already often explained, the quality of the experience automatically strengthens and consolidates the relationship between a consumer and a brand”, the GfK specialists reiterated. “A growing number of Belgians see Ikea as their best friend. Almost one in six consumers agree with this statement. By comparison, Nivea is the only other brand among the 300 brands in our study to achieve this.”

The second factor to illustrate that 2017 was an exceptional year for Ikea is the Brand Equity analysis. “In this group of just under 80% of consumers who state that they have a strong relationship with brands, only 10% state that they have such a relationship while not considering Ikea their favourite. This is less than last year. In any event, although the differences are not all significant, we can only conclude that they all point in the same direction: Ikea continues to build and develop its brand, while forging a very strong relationship with its consumers.”

Digital efforts rewarded

Ikea also tries to cement this almost indestructible relationship online. And successfully too, as the brand came fourth in the Best Digital Brand competition. “While Ikea has neither the greatest reach, nor the most important online impact compared with other brands - except perhaps with its website -, its greatest strength is its sales activation.” At the same time, this is also related to the effort the brand makes to respond to customers’ opinions, feedback and other comments online. “The furniture brand is ranked third for this specific KPI”, GfK confirmed. “Its other strengths are online communication, including the ease with which you can contact the brand online and the fact that it shares interesting content across several platforms.”

Finally, and for the sake of completeness, we also wish to mention that the brand came in seventh place in the Best Corporate Brand ranking. “Ikea mainly owes this position to the rational factors in the study: its international dimension, its market leadership and the quality of the products it sells.”

The competition in the evaluation of the best brands in Belgium is tough as nails and Ikea’s extremely dominant market position undoubtedly helps. At the same time, we can only admire the work of the marcoms teams of the Swedish furniture supplier. They have gone all out to ensure that the consumer is at the centre of everything they do. Ikea makes life easier for its customers, giving everyone the opportunity to have a beautiful and affordable interior. The shopping experience is maximised by the services that are offered throughout the shop on every available square centimetre. Something that Belgians can only applaud.

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