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16 August 2021

Global launch of IKEA app reaches new younger buyers


The new IKEA app has been successfully launched in all Ingka markets, offering customers a simple and enjoyable way to find, choose and buy products fast. To date, the app has been downloaded 31.3 million times, with an average rating of 4.6 stars.  

The dynamic feed of shoppable content has a fresh, contemporary design, allowing users to explore the range, check product information, read ratings and reviews, and add items to their wish list, favourites list or cart. Logged-in users can access carts created on other devices, giving customers an ‘omnichannel experience’.  

“The goal was to create the best retail app possible for IKEA lovers to explore our ranges and shop in a super easy way,” explains Sandra Osbeck, Product Manager, Ingka Group. “We have an amazing team and they did a really awesome job.” 

Development and roll-out  
The previous app, IKEA Store, was limited in function and reach. “You couldn’t use it to shop and it was just not inspirational,” says Sandra. The development of eCommerce capability in the new app means customers can now complete their buying journey online.  

There was also the challenge of making an app that would work for every country. “Thirty-two countries is a lot. We decided to create one app that would work in every territory, rather than tailoring it to each place. Having one central app also makes it easier from our side to maintain.” 
 
Bringing new tech to market, however, often involves a learning curve. The app was first trialled in pilot markets in Eastern Europe, where user feedback was crucial to improving how it worked.  
 
“There were issues at first related to logging in, creating a profile, and some features which were not stable enough,” Sandra reports. “We also noticed that many people were still using the old app and hadn’t migrated across to the new one. We set up tutorials and tools to help them become familiar with the new app. The feedback became more positive and ratings went up to 4.6.” The old IKEA Store app has now been decommissioned.  

The migration of existing IKEA app users to the new version, along with the consistently high ratings, has driven the high numbers of organic downloads of the new app in app stores.  
 
Before the global launch, the app was initially available from July 2019 in selected markets. It was launched in India earlier this year, offering 8,000 home furnishing products, along with ideas and inspiration. Since then, it has gained around 9.5 million unique global monthly users. Between January and April this year, it generated a total revenue of EUR 468 million. 

What the data tells us  
As a business, the new app is important to help IKEA reach new customers, expand our demographics, get to know our customers better and increase our engagement with them. It is a central part of our wider digital transformation strategy and meets the growing trend for mobile shopping. Data already shows that the app is successfully driving new business in a variety of ways.  

1. Greater retention 
“A major difference between the two apps is the addition of an important metric called Retention, which provides data on the number of unique users using the app continuously over a period of weeks or months,” explains Sandra. “Users of the old Store app did not use it as frequently and tended to delete it after visiting the store in person.”  

The new app encourages customers to use it again and again to explore new inspirational content and begin new sales journeys. The average user retention after four weeks is 25%.  

This means that a quarter of people with the IKEA app use it again in the month following their first interaction. 
 
2. Younger customers  
One of the most significant areas of success for the app is the age of the customers it attracts.  
 
“We are seeing a new user segment emerging through the app, compared to the IKEA website,” says Sandra. “It is attracting a much younger audience – three out of four users are under 34 years old.” 
 
Of this group, 29% are under 24. This is a key demographic for IKEA sales – young people moving out of the family home, students and first-time home-owners, who may previously have struggled to physically get to an IKEA store. They are also far more likely to make purchases online.  

3. More female users  
The data has shown an interesting gender bias, with people who identify as women currently making up 85% of all app downloads. It is possible that browsing and purchasing online is a more effective alternative for women than visiting a physical store. It may also indicate a gender bias in home and interior decision-making.  

So what’s next for the app?  
“We are working on an inspirational channel where people can find ideas for things to do in their homes,” says Sandra. “We are also creating new features such as Shop & Go, Apple pay and Geomagical AR.”   
 
Shop & Go is a particularly exciting opportunity for IKEA, giving customers a new platform to blend their digital and instore experience. “Many in-store customers complain about waiting times and how hard it is to find products. The instore mode on the app will feature a scanner device, so customers can keep an eye on their spending while they are shopping and check out much more efficiently at the end.”  
 
Shop & Go has been launched in selected stores in 11 countries. “Feedback so far has been great, with an average 4.7 rating,” says Sandra.  

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