Planning furniture yourself

Association sees online configurators on the advance

People who want to furnish their homes individually often feel the need to plan their furniture themselves. The Association of the German Furniture Industry observes how online configurators are becoming increasingly important in the furniture trade, but also names the prerequisites that are necessary for successful use.

Sep 07 2021

When it comes to furnishings, individuality is increasingly in demand: consumers want furniture that optimally meets their needs, says the association in a recent announcement.

Both in terms of dimensions and functions, as well as with regard to colors and materials, the pieces of furniture should correspond to personal preferences as best as possible. "Many consumers therefore want to try out at home on a laptop, tablet or smartphone what options are available for putting together the furniture models they are considering," says Jan Kurth, Managing Director of the German Furniture Industry Associations (VDM/VHK). "Against this background, online configurators from furniture manufacturers and retailers are becoming increasingly important when buying furniture." 

Customers arrive at retail well-prepared

Customer behavior is currently changing fundamentally, Kurth said. Consumers want to obtain intensive information about the furniture range and the numerous model combinations via all channels - both stationary and online. "More and more customers are making inquiries in advance on the Internet and coming to retailers well prepared." The furniture industry is responding to this, he said, by making more online configurators available, which consumers can use to plan their desired model themselves. According to Kurth, uniform data formats that enable planning across manufacturers and retailers are important for the further spread and acceptance of configurators. 

Upholstery, cabinets, kitchens: Use for different rooms 

In addition to closets and shelving units, for example, the innovative 3D online configurators are also available for upholstered furniture. Thanks to the digital programs, sofas and armchairs can be displayed and configured photo-realistically. In addition to the combination of individual seating elements, the selection of a variety of other features is possible: With the help of the online configurator, among other things, the cover fabric, the seat height, the shape and material of the feet as well as the adjustment of head and side parts and seat depths can be determined. The fully configured sofa can then be viewed virtually in the customer's own living room using a smartphone or tablet camera. This makes it possible to check how the dream sofa will look in your own home. An animation also shows how armrests and seat depth can be adjusted. 

The overall impression becomes clear

Also with kitchens interested customers can make an on-line planning, before it goes to the professional consultation into the kitchen specialized trade, so the federation further. Once the room dimensions have been entered and the windows, doors, switches and connections have been added to the virtual template, the individual upper and lower cabinets can be placed with the desired fronts, as can the electrical appliances, the extractor hood and the sink. In this way, an overall impression of the future kitchen can be gained. 

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