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Case Study about the IKEA Catalogue : are there any cultural differences? Essay Example

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There are cultural differences that do affect the IKEA catalogue used in marketing the products of the company. IKEA is the leading furniture manufacturer globally where it has been offering in a competitive market, but it has managed to adopt competitive strategies making it survive the high competition. It has been offering a wide range of products to its customers at relatively lower prices. Some of the products being offered by IKEA in the market globally do include furnishing products for homes among other products depending on the targeted market. Marketing of the same products in the market is associated with both advantages and disadvantages to the sales of the company.

Advantages of same product catalogs as it is the case of IKEA

1. Ability to reach large number of customers

Some of the benefits that can be associated with same product range can include the ability to increase the number of customer base. Using same product range can be crucial in the process of ensuring that the products can be easily marketing a large number of customers in the market as the process of marketing same product is efficient and effective.

2. Same product range assists in increasing awareness.

People from different regions of the world can be able to become aware of the company products when using same product range in marketing. The various distinctive products of IKEA can be known better in the market through the use of same product range.

3. Ensures standardization of both the operations and products

Through the use of the same product range, IKEA has been able to ensure that its operations and products are standardized as the products are not customized to the local markets making the company products unique. The standardization of the company operations and products can be crucial in the process of ensuring quality services and products of the company hence assisting in ensuring customer satisfaction.

4. Increases the ability to meet the expectations of the customers

Using same product range can assist in enhancing the ability of the company to meet the needs of the customers as they embrace the company products globally. The catalog of IKEA ensures Scandinavian lifestyle that has been embraced globally by its customers.


1. Ignores the different preferences and tastes of customers

The use of same range products can result in failure of the company to consider the diverse tastes of the customers. This can create some potential loss of customers due to the failure of the company to ensure that the preferences of the customers are met.

2. Results in failure to consider the different ways that people employ in buying furniture

The failure to consider the purchasing habits of the customers has made IKEA fail to ensure that the products are customized to ensure its success in the market.

The catalogue has been used as an important marketing tool of IKEA where the cultural differences have been affecting the effectiveness in the use of the catalog. This is because different countries tend to have differing cultural practices concerning the use of the home furniture. The use of furniture does differ due to the differences that do exist among different cultures. Also, the expenditure of the customers in different regions are affected by the culture adopted by the customers. The cultural differences that do exist affect the effectiveness of the catalog of IKEA as different countries that IKEA has been operating have diverse purchasing behaviors that are dictated by their cultures.

Besides, the efficiency of the IKEA catalog can be affected by different languages that are affected by the cultural differences in the countries they operate. Despite the fact that English has been considered as the universal language, there are some other countries that are not able to understand and speak English. Therefore, the catalog used by IKEA can fail in the regions that do not understand the language used in the catalog hence failing to achieve the marketing target. For instance, the catalog used by IKEA has been facing numerous challenges in Asian market due to challenges of understanding the universal language hence affecting the effectiveness of the catalog.

The cultural differences do effect the purpose of the furniture among the customers where the customers tend to buy products for different reasons. The customers can have different uses of the same products; thus, affecting the effectiveness of the catalog of IKEA.

Chinese IKEA catalogues

The Chinese’s catalog and Danish catalog of IKEA have some differences due to the diverse culture stat does exist between the two countries. IKEA has entered China market by adopting a joint venture where it has been a different catalog from that of Danish. In the Chinese market, the customers have perceived the products of IKEA as expensive due to the low income associated with the customers in the Chinese market. The management of IKEA has responded to the customers’ perception in the Chinese market through reducing the prices of the products to increase the sales volume. IKEA in the Chinese market has been facing some challenges in the process of reaching the targeted group due to the violent competition the China market where the competitors have been imitating the products of the company. In the Chinese market, IKEA has ensured that the catalogues used in the market do ensure the family is considered as it connects the collectivist culture of the Chinese people.

Danish IKEA catalogues

The Danish market has different catalogues due to the differences that have been existing among the customers in the market. For instance, the Danish people need to be treated equally with equal rights despite the ethnic and social background. The catalogues used by IKEA in the Danish market have been considering the characteristics and their cultural orientation. The operations of IKEA in the Danish market has been human oriented where high levels of energy have been put on the coworkers where they expect trust and confidence from their bosses. The people in the Danish market are not willing to try new ideas making them willing to try out different ideas.