August 31, 2021: -Ikea is piloting a furniture buyback and resale program in the U.S as its aim is to make the service a permanent fixture at its stores nationwide.
The pilot program will be accessible at its store in the Philadelphia suburb of Conshohocken from Monday through September 19. It will eventually roll out to additional markets.
Ikea is launching repurchase programs in different countries, that include the United Kingdom, to make its business more sustainable and “climate positive” by the year 2030.
Loyalty customers can sell their gently used Ikea furniture in exchange for store credit. At discounted prices, the items will then be available for resale in the retailer’s “as-is” section. Any customer will be able to join the loyalty program for free.
Fully assembled furniture will be assessed based on its condition, age, and functionality, but some products such as dressers will not be eligible for the program.
“We are passionate about making sustainable living easy and affordable for the many and want to be part of a future that’s better for both people and the planet,” said Ikea sustainability manager Jennifer Keesson.
More retailers respond to customer demand for more sustainable products, which are more popular with younger generations. Gap, Macy’s, J.C. Penney, and J. Crew’s Madewell brand have partnered with resale platform ThredUp to test the secondary market in recent months.
Piper Sandler’s spring 2021 Gen Z survey found the 47% of teens have purchased secondhand goods, and 55% have sold them as well. The survey also reveals that teens allocate 8% of their shopping time to secondary purchases. The semiannual survey gathered results from more than 7,000 teenagers with an average age of 16.1.
While much of the demand has been for secondhand clothing, Ikea hopes this behavior can transfer into furniture.