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Six trend areas to shape home textiles industry in future
Feb '13
The Heimtextil 2013 Management Report entitled "Female Shift" illuminates the changes happening in the living environments of women and men. In collaboration with the Zukunftsinstitut, it succeeded in honing in on six trend areas which will be pivotal in shaping the home textiles industry in the future. "For industry and trade, the report's findings provide a useful jumping off point to innovatively develop textile living," reports Olaf Schmidt, Vice President of Textiles & Textile Technologies at Messe Frankfurt.

The key questions investigated in the Heimtextil study were: what influence will the female shift mega trend have on the consumer market? What role will men play as a target group in the home textiles market? Are quality expectations, design and value for products changing? And last but not least, how can manufacturers and retailers innovatively seize these trends and respond to new developments?

The Zukunftsinstitut was able to pinpoint the following trends:

Individual requirements trump price

No generation of women has been as highly qualified and ambitious as the current generation. Today women are financially more independent, which in turn means that they make roughly 80% of all purchasing decisions.

At the same time, roles and partnership models – not to mention the standards set for living and so too home textiles – are changing. The way something makes these consumers feel is more important than price. Roughly 75 percent are sensitive to whether home textiles positively influence their sense of well-being.

High quality standards with a desire for functionality and flexibility

Both men and women feel that more and more demands are being placed on them, requiring greater flexibility in their professional and private lives. And so they are also expecting more for their own homes. The private living area is no longer reserved for family life, leisure and a place to unwind after work. It is increasingly becoming a “control centre” to manage the complexities of day-to-day living.

Quality is key for a feel-good living atmosphere. 70 percent of those surveyed listed quality as a decisive criterion when making a purchase. Lifespan, durability, functionality and practicality were amongst the top five criteria when purchasing interior decorating items for both men and women.

The way to a man's heart: in-depth support and sales consultation

Women do not just want to be masters of their professional lives; they also want to determine the residential setting of their private lives. 36 percent of women and 31 percent of men say that they would love to keep changing their décor. That fact that most German flats and houses see very little change is simply due to a lack of time and information. That is why speciality shops and consultants that help in the decorating, remodelling and renovating process and give advice are becoming significant, especially for the male target group. Consultation by competent salespeople when it comes to interior decorating is more important to men than women (42 percent vs. 34 percent).

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