Why Swedish Retailer IKEA Is So Popular In China (It's Not The Furniture)!

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Swedish retailer IKEA has garnered a worldwide following for its stylish but affordable furniture and accessories. However in China, the store is popular for an entire different reason - As a destination to relax, catch up with friends and even, take long naps!

Each day, when the store's nine Chinese locations open, about 20,000 (30,000 on weekends) customers, some from faraway places, eagerly flock in. A few head to the cafeteria, while others seek out comfortable couches and beds and settle down with their books, knitting or simply snuggle under a comforter and take a nap.

While some leave in a few hours others, turn the visit into a day-long excursion - Starting with a warm cinnamon roll and coffee breakfast or a hot dog and ice cream lunch, followed by a nap, some family pictures, and finally, just before the store closes for the day, a dinner of braised mushrooms and rice.

Among the people that actually come to look at what the store has to offer are a percentage that browse for design ideas, reserving their purchases for other cheaper stores. Despite all these rather dire-sounding statistics, the Swedish company does not appear to be worried - In fact, they are planning to add five new stores to their nine existing Chinese locations.

The company believes that by allowing the people to relax and enjoy their furniture, they are simply building a clientele of the future - One that will only buy from IKEA once they can afford to. Given that their 2011 retail sales in China came to a whopping $2.7 trillion dollars and is up 16% from the previous year, they sure seem to know what they are talking about!

Resources: odditycentral.com,cnbc.com, forbes.com

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119 Comments
  • headream100
    headream100Tuesday, December 3, 2013 at 5:30 am
    Cool!
    • mintshine
      mintshineSaturday, July 20, 2013 at 9:23 am
      I love Ikea and I beg to come whenever we go there!
      • lionsrcute1
        lionsrcute1Thursday, February 27, 2014 at 4:05 pm
        I always get lost there. -.-
        • alanna16
          alanna16Monday, September 8, 2014 at 7:41 pm
          me 2.Once I got lost with my YOUNGER cousin!! :(
      • marshmellowlove
        marshmellowloveThursday, June 27, 2013 at 6:54 pm
        Good thing their is an IKEA in Denver or I would FREAK!
        • marshmellowlove
          marshmellowloveThursday, June 27, 2013 at 6:53 pm
          It's their second home.;)
          • genie
            genieTuesday, June 18, 2013 at 6:26 am
            the store should do something
            • hootie
              hootieSaturday, June 15, 2013 at 9:03 pm
              thats crazy
              • animalfan
                animalfanThursday, May 30, 2013 at 3:35 pm
                Strange, but cool. I want to do that.
                • la_eliza
                  la_elizaFriday, May 17, 2013 at 8:57 am
                  That would be awesome!!
                  • ktpocadot34
                    ktpocadot34Monday, May 13, 2013 at 2:42 pm
                    thats crazy
                    • laa9876
                      laa9876Sunday, March 17, 2013 at 11:09 am
                      ok, this is REALLY weird!!