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From Home Furnishing Business

Clustered Up

Consumers regard furniture shopping in a variety of manners. The approach to furnishing their homes varies widely.



Like anything in this world, people come in all shapes and sizes, and of course, shopping preferences.

All consumers are not created equally; nor do they approach furniture shopping in the same manner. Impact Consulting Services, parent company of Home Furnishings Business, has created a proprietary model dubbed Lifestyle Clusters. The clusters provide furniture retailers a look at how consumers in different lifestyles tend to shop for their homes.

While psychographic profiles combine demographics of age and income with geo-demographic attributes, the Lifestyle Clusters add another layer. Lifestyle Clusters dig into the buying attitudes of specific consumers, the beliefs or expectations that cause consumers to choose products to buy.

The clusters are developed by giving consumers are list of statements that deal with internal attributes focused on consumers’ overall lifestyle, how consumers feel about the home, including concerns with decorating, how formal or informal a home is, and feelings about shopping for furniture.

The ratings are then tallied and the lifestyle profiles are assigned to the surveyed consumer.


Style Aware

These consumers are motivated by how things look. They read style magazines—fashion and home—and spend a good part of their leisure time shopping and surveying what is in the market place. 

The consumers pride themselves on knowing the latest trends and want to be perceived as reflecting them. They have a heightened sense of style and are as comfortable with their decisions as they would be with those of a professional advisor.

If they do not have the income to allow purchasing as much as they would like, they will buy what they can afford and postpone further spending until they have the money to buy what they want. To this group, presentation is extremely important. 

Frequently, but not always, consumers in this segment are among the population’s more affluent.

Here’s how to spot them:

·         They have a sense of purpose and are at ease in furniture stores.

·         They are stylish or trendy in appearance.

·         They pay close attention to room vignettes and accessories.

·         They may come in the store with fabric swatches, paint chips and pictures of rooms.

·         They are well versed in furniture and interior design.


Prestige Seeker

Consumers in this cluster are often seen as status seekers. Image is all-important. Their fashion styling—whether clothing or home related—is a direct reflection on who they are, and they judge themselves by how others perceive them.

Prestige Seekers are not always the most confident about their sense of style and are often insecure about their ability to buy the right thing. It is not uncommon for them to seek advise from friends and professionals.

This group reads magazines, watches television programs and visits Internet sites with decorating and fashion advice. They are not trendsetters, rather trend adopters. 

They are more likely than Style Awares to rely on a retail sales person for advice and to buy those items shown in a store display, whether it’s an outfit on a mannequin or a collection in a room vignette.

Here’s how to spot them:

·         Stylish personal appearance

·         They are less assured in their manner than Style Awares.

·         They may carry fabric swatches, paint chips, pictures of rooms and rarely shop alone.

·         They are very interested in store display, but more as a guide to purchase. This group studies vignettes for ideas and guidance.


Self Possessed

This consumer group reflects a sense of well-being and self-confidence, and members take great pride in their surroundings and their lives.

They have a high sense of style, but couple it with an adherence to the belief that function is as important as style. Members of the Self Possessed group tend to be are very creative, but it is a creativity that is intuitive. They gain as much personal satisfaction from the creative process as they do from the object produced.  

Regarding the home, these consumers want beauty, but not at the expense of function and comfort.

Here’s how to spot them:

·         These consumers may travel quickly through stores’ room displays editing in their mind.

·         They may be dressed stylishly offbeat or stylishly upbeat or in a casual manner.

·         Like Style Awares, these consumers are confident and at ease in furniture stores.




This consumer is a paradox. On one hand, we see a consumer who is somewhat disorganized in their daily habits. Members of this group tend to be forgetful, don’t adhere to schedules, and often are doubtful of personal choices. 

In the area of home furnishings, they don’t enjoy shopping, care nothing for decorating, and think furniture is only functional.  On the other hand, they would like to have a nice house, not necessarily a beautiful, wonderfully decorated one, but a tidy house.

Followers will use a decorator or the advice of a friend since they lack confidence in their choices.

Here’s how to spot them:

·         They want a well-decorated home, but are often intimidated in furniture stores.

·         Followers may enter a store and wander around aimlessly.

·         Store displays are important, but this consumer often has the feeling that it’s too big of a job to handle.

·         Lack of confidence is evident in the consumer’s body language—hurried, tentative and indecisive. They are a bit anxious in furniture stores.

·         Reluctant to make a purchase without advice so they are often accompanied by a spouse, other family member or friend.


Just Me

Armed with a what-you-see-is-what-you-get attitude, the Just Me consumer doesn’t feel it’s necessary to present an image. They are polar opposite of Prestige Seekers.

 They don’t spend their free time on things that don’t interest them, and this approach extends to their homes. They have no interest in the style and fashion of furniture.  Furniture is purely functional, and they make no apologies for this sentiment.  

Shopping for furniture can be an intimidating experience, and they rely heavily on retail sales associates for advice.

Here’s how to spot them:

·         They probably will be dressed casually. Remember, they have no need to impress.

·         They have little interest in furniture and will likely find shopping for it intimidating.

·         Because of the discomfort, this customer will appear in a hurry on the sales floor.

·         Keep in mind, furniture shopping can be uncomfortable for this group that is usually very confident about his/her self image and ideas.


Comfort Seeker

Family, friends, social gatherings and home crafts are at the center of these consumers’ lifestyle. Comfort is more important than style or status, and they are content with the lifestyle they have. 

Even though they do not derive status from their home, they feel confident about making furniture purchases and find shopping enjoyable. Furniture, however, is primarily functional rather than fashionable.

How to spot them:

·         The Comfort Seeker will most likely be dressed comfortably and possibly informally.

·         Furniture shopping is not a chore for this consumer. He or she will take time to wander a retail floor.

·         This consumer is influenced by store display.

·         Expect a relatively laid back approach to the purchase. This is the group that will likely shop the longest for their purchase.


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