United States consumer appliances market: Internet retailing aiding industry

Press Release   •   Feb 19, 2013 16:16 GMT

Internet retailing has been increasing steadily in the United States consumer appliances market over the last few years, and in 2012 online sales made substantial gains in both major and small appliances. Many retailers, as well as manufacturers, adapted to shift towards the online distribution of appliances. Some retailers tried to leverage the concept of showrooming, whilst others shifted their own internet strategies, changing the way in which major appliances were offered, promoted and shipped. In addition, facets of generational buying affected the patterns of online consumers, which in turn affected the marketing strategies of major online retailers and the use of social media.

The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) has been working in partnership with governments at all levels (local, state and federal), retailers, manufacturers and non-profit companies to increase the number of collection opportunities available, and to provide more awareness of resources, which will help to increase recycling efforts. This growing awareness of the methods of disposing of old appliances can be positioned as a significant advantage for retailers as well as manufacturers in leveraging consumers‟ sustainability efforts into sales.

The 2012 Consumer Electronics Show witnessed broad and innovative shifts in smart appliances, which incorporated smartphone capabilities, smart grid technologies and functionalities geared towards consumers‟ lifestyles. More important was the evolution of bottom-up development within infrastructure which can actually support smart appliances, which was maturing. This advance is likely to bolster sales of smart appliances, and expand the functionality and connectivity of many major as well as small appliances.

'Communal cocooning' increased in the wake of sluggish economic recovery. Whilst many households began to 'cocoon' by making their homes into retreats and havens from the outside world, many still wanted to entertain, and design their social lives around their 'cocoons'. As such, dinner parties, home entertaining and 'communal cocooning' began to gain popularity.

This 'communal cocooning' allowed individuals to entertain and show-off, whilst also saving money not only for themselves, but for their social circles. The effects of 'communal cocooning' shifted design aesthetics for major appliances as well as small appliances. This trend also elevated the kitchen to the new living room; changing consumers‟ perception of where and how appliances fit in as lifestyle accessories, as well as adding aspirational value.

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