Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 24

Thread: The Furniture Industry for 2023

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    15,951

    Default The Furniture Industry for 2023

    What I see for 2023 is this industry is pretty much out of the Covid craziness. Backlogs are shrinking, inventory is up at all the retail stores (my store is fully stocked as of this post) and manufacturers are looking for orders again. The competitiveness is back but the prices are not pre-covid in the least. So far, there have been no prices increases from any supplier for 2023, I think they are very much aware they need to control pricing. Gone are the crazy incentives for new workers (signing bonuses) and costly employee retention plans.

    Stores traffic is way down, its very quiet and new orders have slowed. Interest rates? Too much buying during Covid? Prices too high? Disposable income re-directed to other things like vacations?

    What do I see coming for the rest of the year?

    1) Order completion times of 4 months or less from most suppliers.

    2) Sale Periods from the manufacturers. They will run promotions rather than lowering prices as their need for more sales orders increases.

    3) A general slowdown in sales on home furnishings.

    Just my opinions, no basis in facts!
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty-six years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2022
    Posts
    38

    Default Re: The Furniture Industry for 2023

    Phew, nice to hear some good news from any industry. Thanks for these updates.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    15,951

    Default Re: The Furniture Industry for 2023

    Buddy Sherrill passed away recently at the age of 96. He was an icon in the furniture industry and though I never met him personally, I used to admire the Ferrari he would pull up in front of the Sherrill Showroom during the High Point Market and leave parked on the sidewalk (He owned Foreign Cars Italia in Greensboro NC). He did step away from the business a few years ago and his son runs it now, it is still privately held.

    I learned also this week there are only TWO dealers that show floor stock in the metro Washington DC area for Hancock and Moore. That's amazing to me that in one of the wealthiest cities in America with a population of around 5.5 million people, there are only two dealers for the best leather furniture in the country (the Keeping Room being one, Greenfront in Manassas the other). A few years ago there were six, but they have all closed up. What this tells me is people for the most part still buy furniture on price, not on quality. longevity and style. Sheffield used to have a store in a high-rent location at Dulles Town Center, but they pulled out and closed. They are coming back with a boutique showroom in Great Falls, but its only 2,000 sf, geared towards high profit professional decorating.

    I an sensitive to customer comments about what they like and don't like when they come into my store (disregarding those that say they don't like ANYTHING they see!), and have brought in more product that is a tier down from Hancock and Moore and more price-friendly. Well, that didn't really satisfy those commenting on price because as soon as I did the comments changed from "Hancock and Moore is too expensive" to "Well, this doesn't sit or is as nicely made as Hancock and Moore".

    Well, YES - you can't have it both ways! The Keeping Room will continue to be the leader in the Mid-Atlantic for number of H&M pieces on the floor, I always keep 40 to 50 floor models in the showroom and will continue to do so.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty-six years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2020
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: The Furniture Industry for 2023

    Keep on keeping on, Duane! You run the store and carry product properly! No one else does what you do and wr need a high quality furniture option you provide. Too many peddlers of junk out there!
    One of my favorite sales observations: "Price, Product, Service - Pick Any Two You Want!"

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    15,951

    Default Re: The Furniture Industry for 2023

    May 2023. Covid shortages are DEFINITELY over in the Furniture Industry and I am just getting slight whiffs of concern from suppliers on not enough orders. We went from a one year backlog in 2022 because there were no workers to possible layoffs halfway into 2023. Crazy stuff. Of course, not a single manufacturer wants to lose any people because after a year or more, they just have them trained up to where they need them to be to perform to the company standards. We are back to pre-covid order times of 8 to 10 weeks from a lot of makers right now and no one I deal with is running over 16 weeks. To be sure, the crazy signing bonuses they were offering workers in 2021 and 2022 are gone (that was a major cause of many of those price increases), and I think in the back half of 2023, we might start to see some promotions as they look for more orders. I don't have a crystal ball, but when you have been doing this as long as I have, you get a sense of what might be forthcoming. I do not forsee any more price increases coming either, thank goodness.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty-six years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2022
    Location
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Posts
    222

    Default Re: The Furniture Industry for 2023

    Crazy how much it has changed...Hopefully it reaches more of an equilibrium. Sad to have all those workers trained up only to have to lay them off.

    That new H&M line should help address this issue more directly.

    Really love these "state of the industry posts"

    Thanks for sharing your historical perspective!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    15,951

    Default Re: The Furniture Industry for 2023

    I'm not surprised actually. During Covid, everyone was working from home and realized how sad some of their furniture was, especially desks, desk chairs and the main room sofa. The rush was on to replace those and people would take just about anything, but there was no supplier inventory. Also, they were staying home and not spending disposable income dollars on other things, so they would be able to spend more on furnishings. It was record sales for two years for most furniture stores who could beg/borrow or create product. Inflation ramped up, too many price increases and interest rates also rose. That dampened enthusiasm considerably and now we are back to more or less equilibrium. But some retail outlets closed and went out of business too, so there are less furniture stores now than I can ever recall. And too many surviving stores put HUGE - MASSIVE orders in during Covid not realizing that was not going to go on forever, and like a game of musical chairs, they were left standing up when the music stopped. End result, far too much inventory they paid high prices for.

    So, what happens when a store has too much inventory? It they really need Cash Flow, they run it out on sale, but that kills their margins which leaves them in an unhealthy position financially. But to be sure, they stop ordering new pieces from the Makers, which means backlogs come down, way down....and makers start to freak out a bit. If you can't' keep the troops busy, you have to lay some of them off. And they will not come back, they move to other jobs in other industries and they lose that trained worker.

    I have not ordered any new floor stock of any kind, from any maker for the last four months. I'm still getting items drift in from last Fall orders, but I have nothing new in the pipeline since January. And since customer are slowing into the store with orders, you can see what happens to the manufactuers, my position is not unique - most stores are not ordering much new stock. Will be an interesting Fall when orders typically pickup.....
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty-six years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2022
    Location
    OKC
    Posts
    70

    Default Re: The Furniture Industry for 2023

    So are you predicting more “sales” in the future from the manufacturers?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    15,951

    Default Re: The Furniture Industry for 2023

    Quote Originally Posted by Shirley View Post
    So are you predicting more “sales” in the future from the manufacturers?
    Not exactly. I am predicting Promotions, which is not really the same thing as an all-out sale. Manufacturers rarely have all-out sales, instead they develop ways to move more product in ways that don't say desperation. Three that have recently surfaced for example:

    1) Fjord's Furniture known for Scan-design motion, send out a dealer memo that said "Any salesman in your organization that can sell (8) units before the end of June is entitled to a FREE power recliner for their personal use, shipping included".

    2) Hancock and Moore just rolled out their "H" Series Home frames in selected leathers at some amazing price points, effectively to what they were selling for 20 years ago. I posted that here (no one responded to it, other than one person who asked to be sent more information, but as mentioned, I do not have more info).

    3) Hooker Furniture / Bradington Young rolled out some quantity discount deals, if the dealer bought twenty or more units as I recall. I didn't pay that much attention to it once I saw the quantity requirement.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty-six years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Posts
    610

    Default Re: The Furniture Industry for 2023

    Not really much response you can give I guess when you say up front you don't have any additional information. I am sure you will get more when there is. Need prices, leathers, frames, etc.
    '

Similar Threads

  1. January 2023 Domestic Markets
    By drcollie in forum High Point Furniture Market Report & Trade News
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 03-17-2023, 10:01 PM
  2. Replies: 34
    Last Post: 06-26-2020, 02:19 PM
  3. Christmas Break for the Furniture Industry
    By drcollie in forum The Lobby
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 12-21-2018, 11:02 AM
  4. Customer Service Practices in the Furniture Industry
    By simplyjeff in forum The Lobby
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 06-17-2010, 10:49 AM
  5. Newbie with 30 years in the furniture industry
    By simplyjeff in forum The Lobby
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 10-29-2008, 10:55 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •