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From Home Furnishing Business

What Sells: Mattress Matters

Sleep, sweet sleep. The often evasive, yet health replenishing life cycle, has consumers searching for the right key to unlock their dreams of peaceful, revitalizing slumber. There seems to be an endless list of products designed for this quest – from essential oils and sound machines to weighted blankets and eye masks. While these products certainly have their own merit, the real sleep solution is the most obvious answer: the mattress! Manufacturers at every retail level are striving to answer the call by providing a wide range of solutions.

Though the category has become much broader than the basic inner spring model, this familiar means to an end is still the most popular selection among consumers based on a FurnitureCore, Inc. survey developed by Impact Consulting Services, parent company to Home Furnishings Business. Of consumers that recently bought a mattress, 52.27% reported buying an innerspring model. This number is followed by memory foam at 40.91%, air (like Sleep Number) at 4.55%, and the most expensive, but durable solution, latex, at 2.27%.

With the circulation of the many ads on social media regarding new and exciting mattress products, familiarity and excitement surrounding sleep innovations will allow the consumer to increasingly branch out from the most basic models. In this pandemic economy, word of mouth has been more important than ever as many consumers are weary of leaving their homes to try out mattresses in person. One of the leading innovators in the field, not only in innovation, but also recommendation by word of mouth, is Intellibed, who has earned the coveted 2021 Women’s Choice Award for their excellent customer recommendation rating. Colin House, CEO at Intellibed, gives the insight behind the award winning technology, saying, “Intellibed’s Gel Matrix is the most innovative and technological breakthrough in beds since the invention of memory foam in the early 1990s. Gel Matrix technology, originally used (and still used today) in professional medical environments to bring comfort to burn and long-term patients, is scientifically-engineered to provide both a firm and soft sleep surface at the same time, reducing pressure points. The Intellibed Gel Matrix mattress provides retailers with a unique selling proposition to help them increase per-square-foot profits and elevates the shopping experience for every critical store visit.”

The fact that consumers are aware that mattresses should be replaced every few years keeps the category at the top of mind. Depending on several factors involving sleep patterns and the type of mattress purchased, the life span of a mattress may vary. But most important is the consumer perception of how often their mattress should be replaced. Based on the same consumer survey, the majority of consumers, 54.55%, believe a mattress should be replaced every 6-10 years. 11.36% of consumers believe that a mattress should be replaced every 5 years and will continue to invest in new mattresses until they find a solution to suit their needs. Of the remainder of the group, 27.27% replace their mattress every 11-15 years and 6.82% replace them between 16-20 years.

The year 2020 certainly brought about many disruptions in the industry with the mattress category significantly affected, but experienced a recovery late in the year. Margins placed on product can significantly boost retailer average ticket to help them over the slump. Manufacturers, such as Malouf, have product proven to do just that. Says Eric Holmstead, director of North American sales, “Our best-selling Wellsville Gel Memory Foam Hybrid provides a high-end feel and price point without the National brand cost, allowing retail partners to capture significant margin with placement on their floor.”

Though sales have been boosted through Q3 of 2020, product delivery is still being impacted at the retail level. Many retailers have expressed their challenge to receive product, but few manufacturers are situated perfectly to meet the demand. Shaun Pennington, president of Diamond Mattress, explains his company’s unique ability to satisfy demand, saying, “As a vertically integrated U.S. manufacturer, Diamond Mattress is delivering products on time nationwide while avoiding many of the supply chain issues the industry is facing. The ability of U.S. producers like us to innovate and create more value for retail programs continue to make bedding a strong and growing category for furniture and mattress retailers.” Cheers to 2021 and the hope the year brings as we inch closer to our new normal with product innovations, supply chain solutions, and with the help of a good mattress, some deep sleep!

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