An exponential rise in the number of time individuals spend at home and ensuing newly regimented practices of hygiene and cleanliness, has led consumers to invest more in their home furnishings and décor. This post-Covid shift in consumers’ mindset and availability of more discretionary expense (redirected from travel) has made home textiles a rapidly emerging and one of the fastest recovering sectors after the pandemic.
Here are the top 10 trends that are redefining the home furnishing and décor industry:-
Leading Exports - India has always led the leaderboard from the second place when it comes to home textile exports. It holds 11 percent of a $100+ billion global market share, which is now expanding rapidly with the universal shift toward the work-from-home lifestyle.
Bouncing Back Better: Optimism for Home Textile Industry - Consumers have become increasingly conscious about maintaining their indoor spaces, and the hospitality industry is being revived after a dry spell. This has contributed to home textiles being one of the fastest recovering retail sectors post the pandemic.
As per industry reports, home furnishings and decor trade in India is expected to clock 20-25 percent growth with healthy margins in FY22 – setting expectations for large trading volumes in the coming months.
Conscious Consumers - There is an uptick in fashion sensitivity toward household furnishings, which has been exaggerated because of work-from-home, video calling, and quarantines. To respond to these demands, the variety and availability of home textile options have grown manifold. The industry now spans from luxury brands to cheap fast fashion.
Eco-Friendly Fabrics - Organic fabrics, textures, and natural weaves are becoming popular through the emerging conversations around eco-friendliness. With focus shifting toward sustainability, eco-conscious consumers are reducing their carbon footprint by choosing locally and ethically sourced fabrics like jute, khadi, etc. This will immensely benefit micro-entrepreneurs like cottage industry producers and women SHGs organized in the handicraft industry.
Hometech: The Future of Functionality Fabric - Technical Textiles are functional fabrics engineered for use across various industries. Their global market is anticipated to cross $200 billion by 2022. HomeTech is a leading segment, featuring products like fiberfill, blinds fabrics, mosquito nets, and furniture fabrics. In India technical textiles are set to occupy a significant share of the entire textiles market by 2025 – giving rise to new modern manufacturing units, potentially also leading to the evolution of many traditional production methods like handloom towards the niche luxe category.
Comfort with Online Shopping - Post Covid-19 lockdowns, digital natives and immigrants alike are moving past the ‘touch feel’ inhibitions of online shopping, and are more willing to trust product quality, reviews, and virtual displays, leading to exponential growth in the segment past few years; particularly soft furnishing (cushions, rugs, etc.) and multipurpose movable lightweight decors and functional furniture. Also, strong demand from Tier I to Tier IV cities and shift of buying behavior to online-first stores has led to demand shifting from unorganized players to branded organized players.
Demand for Doorstep Delivery - The pandemic has re-coded consumer perceptions of home delivery. Initially just an option, it is now becoming an essential mode of purchase. Purchase decisions today are often based on whether a retailer offers home delivery services or not. More than half the consumers in a recent survey across Tier I to IV cities said home delivery was important to their purchases, with home furnishings making the list of products they anticipated needing and ordering soon.
Energy and Efficient Improvement - The industrial sector is directly responsible for nearly half of the country’s total energy consumption and has the second-highest potential for decarbonization. Going forward, we can expect environmentally conscious developments in the sector given the renewed effort toward net-zero emissions after COP26.
Government Assistance Through PLI Scheme - The government recently announced a Rs 10,683 crore Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme for the textile industry. Over the next 5 years, this scheme aims to create investments of over Rs. 19,000 crore and garner a cumulative turnover of over Rs. 3 lakh crore. We can certainly expect large investments in home textiles to feed the global rise in demand.
Developing Textile Parks - The government’s ‘Mega Integrated Textile Region and Apparel (MITRA) Park’ scheme has pledged to establish seven textile parks over a three-year period. These parks will have the capacity for creating an integrated textiles value chain at a single location, right from spinning and weaving to producing the manufactured garment. This will attract new technology and boost FDI investments.
To meet growing market demands with ease, the home furnishing industry, largely made up of MSMEs, would benefit from digitizing and organizing its entire trade ecosystem. With general retail patterns in the industry shifting toward digital channels, small home furnishing businesses can digitize all their sales and supply, whether B2C or B2B, allowing them access to a larger market (both in terms of supply and demand). Online B2B platforms that ensure end-to-end ordering to doorstep delivery can help smaller stores in dense neighborhoods to compete better in terms of price & quality with online counterparts, as well as access to credit lines through anchor-led supply chain financing programs. This can help MSMEs expand their business significantly at a time when the home textile industry is on the cusp of a boom.