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IKEA Teaches Everything You Need to Know About Airline Retail

CarTrawler-sponsored report shows IKEA’s merchandising methods are also used by AirAsia, Air New Zealand, Allegiant, easyJet, Ryanair, and Scoot.

May 21, 2019, Shorewood, Wisconsin – IKEA is not an airline, but it is one of the world’s master retailers.  The company’s relationship with customers doesn’t depend on pushing transactions.  Instead the company seeks to offer “products at prices so low that as many people as possible will be able to afford them.”  It has become a global success because it first seeks to meet customer needs.  This distinctive style also defines retail-savvy ways to boost revenue for airlines:


  • Dream Room pricing promotes the value of IKEA products. Sprinkled throughout its showrooms are displays promoting a single price for everything in a room.  Scoot, an Asian low-cost carrier, takes a similar approach with product bundles that promote the value of adding more.
  • IKEA engages loyalty throughout the store. Signage promotes the IKEA Family program and the IKEA Visa credit card.  In-store benefits include free coffee or tea in the Café for IKEA Family members.  In a similar manner, Allegiant Air in the US offers a beer or wine on flights to Allegiant Visa cardholders.
  • Consumers are encouraged to be curious and relaxed by store design. Airline websites are notoriously focused to operate as transactional engines.  EasyJet has broken ranks with this mediocrity with its “Inspire Me” search engine offered on its website and mobile app.

IKEA offers a lasting memory of a store visit after check-out.  Signs in US stores promise the gooey goodness of a $1 hot and fresh cinnamon roll.  AirAsia is a kindred spirit in this regard because of the effort it makes to market a memorable and reasonably priced onboard café.  It too has a signature dish with its Pak Nassar’s Nasi Lemak chicken entrée priced at just 15 ringgit ($3.70).

Airlines have a unique competitive advantage at the top of the purchase funnel, and they need to maximize this advantage by offering a seamless, customer-centric experience to ‘own the last mile’. By creating a marketplace focused exclusively on the customer’s needs, airlines can replicate the superior experience offered by successful disruptors like IKEA and further build brand loyalty,” says Aileen McCormack, Chief Commercial Officer at CarTrawler.

To download a full copy of the report please click here.