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Furniture & Furnishing Industry

UAE’s Furniture & Furnishing Industry

The nature of FMCG is such that its consumption will be always heading up with increasing population, improving income levels, penetration of organized retail, and growth of eCommerce. Mark all checked for the UAE and especially for Dubai.

The easing up of the FDI restrictions in the country’s retail and wholesale sector has further boosted the confidence of foreign companies to intensify their presence in the UAE.

Customer behaviour has tilted towards eCommerce; opening up new economic avenues for eGrocery business. Many FMCG companies as well retail grocery business brands are pushing hard with promotional campaigns and price discounts to boost online shopping. And because of the intricate challenges and competitive opportunities, the role of FMCG consulting companies or FMCG consultants has assumed greater significance. Even for online grocery stores, grocery store consulting services are often used by businesses to remain competitive, growth-oriented, and sustainable. But small businesses often do not approach any grocery business consultants for professional support which sometimes can hinder their growth prospects. It is worthwhile to realize that  even advisory services by any competent grocery business consultant could make a significant difference for small retail stores.

Few Common Challenges

The indispensability of furniture & furnishing products in domestic and commercial buildings gives immense attractiveness for business opportunities. The market needs are fulfilled by various businesses involved in the furniture supply chain like manufacturers, suppliers, assemblers, and retailers. And every business in the industry has unique challenges to face placed throughout the supply chain.

Bulky Nature of many Furniture Products

Many furniture products are bulky by nature. This gives rise to mobility problems in merchandising, handling and transportation. The problem is more acute with physical retail stores. But online retailers also have to pay for the movement and storage of their inventory. With space being a constraint for most businesses, they have to be specific with their offerings and supply chain management. Even with the anticipation of demand, all products cannot be pushed through the supply chain and distribution network.

The risk of damage always remains high with bulky furniture items. Even a small damage would warrant a return or replacement. Sending such products back to warehouses or workshops leads to losses or increased costing. And until the defective products are corrected and sold again, the investments remain stuck.

Anticipating and Holding Inventory

Customizable furniture is a niche-oriented business approach. In ready-made furniture, the options of customization are limited. But in customizable furniture, customers have freedom in deciding on the design, colour, forming material, etc. However, inventory management poses a big challenge to businesses that deal in ready-made as well as customizable furniture.

For the local workshop-based retail businesses, it is difficult to anticipate the varying degree of customization requests and store inventory accordingly. And storing inventory in anticipation of future demand also does not go well with business prudence.

For ready-made furniture retailers, the same problem arises in the form of delays in fulfilling customer orders because of inventory issues at the source or workshop level.

Returns and Replacements

Made of plastic, wood, steel or any other material, furniture products are bulky by nature. They may be heavy and consume a lot of space. When the question of logistics arises, moving around furniture inventory is a heavy-duty task. Returns and replacements are not easy for businesses. The entire order fulfilment process has to be carried out more than once. This also has costing, financial and manpower implications. That is why it is often considered that effective supply chain management in the furniture retail industry is of paramount importance.

Challenges in the Brick and Mortar Model

The unorganized sector constitutes a huge chunk of the global furniture market. Such businesses are not yet properly synchronized with the formal mainstream industry. Most of these businesses are MSMEs by volume of sales and revenue generation. Only a selected few local brands and businesses operating in the big cities possess the resourcefulness to go for scale and expansion.

The strategic significance of a strong organization is often undermined by many conventional businesses. And as a result, they exhibit weaker middle-level management. With weaker middle-level management, the owners have to get involved in the routine business operations including supervision. On the contrary, business owners should be focusing on their long-term business goals.

Challenges in the eCommerce Model (Online Furniture Business)

The problem of the bulkiness of furniture products affects the eCommerce retail businesses as well. Whether the logistics and mobility activities are carried out by internal employees or a third-party service provider, it is never easy for any business to achieve efficiency here. But the products have to move. Even the eCommerce-based inventory-light business models have to deal with it. Businesses also have to see whether the required logistical facilities and services are available in the delivery destination.

Another tough operational challenge for online furniture businesses is the on-site assembly function. Customer experience can easily go for a toss when operational planning is poor. Adequate QA and QC measures must be placed at the relevant junctures to ensure that the package is complete in every respect for passing on to the next point in the supply chain and distribution network.

Challenges in the Hybrid Model

In recent years, many brick and mortar businesses and online furniture business startups have started to pursue omnichannel tactics and strategies in the furniture market. The hybrid model allows businesses to make the furniture purchasing journey easier for customers. This is possible with eCommerce platforms and technologies or even furniture studios.

But again the problem of furniture products crops up in the supply chain activities and inventory management of the hybrid models.

Managing inventory simultaneously for multiple channels is a daunting challenge. It calls for having centralized hubs to act as fulfilment centres and workshops. And with these hubs, significant investments get involved in inventory storage and transit.


We are a boutique retail and eCommerce consulting firm. Our growing international presence extends to the UAE and Dubai. We design and deliver business solutions for our clients in the furniture industry. Our services in furniture business consulting include market research, business model development, business plan development, business strategy, SOP design and development, talent management and organizational structuring, and franchise consulting. We are a process-oriented enterprise. We engage a team of professional furniture consultants in service design and delivery.

In the furniture and home furnishing industry, the sub-verticals that come under the ambit of our services include premium home furnishings and furniture, office furniture, home décor, affordable furniture, specialised furniture, kitchen furniture, modular & wooden furniture, indoor and outdoor furniture, etc.

In furniture industry consulting, the types of business models that we offer assistance in developing include furniture retail, online furniture, omnichannel furniture, furniture manufacturing, furniture exports, furniture D2C, furniture franchising, etc.

In furniture retailer business consulting, YRC delivers insightful market research reports. These reports comprise actionable information and recommendations for better planning and strategy formulation.

In business model development, our team of furniture business consultants work towards formulating strong UVP-based business models. The team also charts the roadmap required for the creation and delivery of the intended value.

With retail and eCommerce as our domain expertise, our team of offline and online retail furniture business consultants are adept at crafting hybrid business solutions.

YRC assesses and prepares the various commercial and financial estimations and projections that will be required to implement and run the business for a given timeframe. Aspects covered here include capital and operating expenditure, revenue and cash flow projections, purchase planning, ROI and break-even analysis, and more.

In franchise consulting services, we assist clients define their franchise expansion strategies, prepare the financial assessments, search for ideal franchise partners, draft franchise legal agreements, design and implement SOPs, and establish the required franchise audit processes.

In SOP consulting services, our focus is on streamlining the business processes, creating the operational routines, achieving standardization, and building a robust furniture retail management system for our clients. SOPs provide the groundwork for automation. It also helps identify the right furniture retail management software.

To know more about our furniture business consulting services for the UAE and Dubai market or if you have any queries for our furniture consultants, drop us a message to quickly schedule a callback.
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