For this Learning Activity, I had to visit a well-known store and evaluate how they remain true to their brand identity or how they do not. I chose to go to IKEA.
Ikea’s logo is a wordmark. It uses a thick font to display the name of the brand in blue and yellow, like the flag of Sweden, home to Ikea. The same colors are found all over their stores, from the building itself to the bags, shopping baskets, posters, and staff uniforms.
Their brand ideal
The IKEA vision is “to create a better everyday life for the many people”, and they achieve that by offering a wide range of well-designed, functional home furnishing products at prices so low that as many people as possible will be able to afford them.
How they remain true to their brand ideal within their shops
In their shops, Ikea shows a wide variety of styles and functional solutions at low prices. They recreate various types of houses in many sizes to make it easier for the customer to find a solution for their own home. Their furniture is practical, customisable and easy to fit in different spaces.
There are plenty of posters showing their low prices and offers all around the shop, and even a combined price for entire rooms in the house.
Everything at Ikea shows its brand ideal.
The customer experience according to the brand ideal
Ikea makes it very easy to navigate their stores due to the way they are divided and distributed. There are three main sections: a showroom, where you can see a wide variety of their furniture; a market hall with textiles, accessories, lighting and decoration items; and a self-serve furniture area. The store is designed to follow a path that takes you through all the departments; signs on the floor show you the direction.
At the entrance, there is a big map of the building with all the store departments so you can find your way around quickly, including shortcuts. Throughout the store, customers can find little stands where they can take a paper measuring tape, pencils and a printed version of the floor plan that can also be used as a shopping list. Each item on the shop is marked with a number that indicates the location where you can find it at the self-serve furniture area.
Another essential part of the experience as a customer is Ikea’s restaurant and cafe, where they serve varied quality foods at low prices.
Also, Ikea is very family-friendly; they have a playground for kids, special menus and toys in the restaurant, and toilets and sinks adapted for them.
It’s quite easy to shop at Ikea, which agrees with their brand ideal, but in case you need assistance, their staff can guide you and even help you design your kitchen or wardrobe.
The visual display of products according to the brand ideal
As mentioned before, one of Ikea’s sections is a showroom, where they recreate rooms and houses using their furniture and accessories. They design it to look like a real home, and everything they display is on sale at the store. If you like what you see, you only have to write down the number and pick it up before check-out.
All in all, Ikea wants to make a better and easier everyday life, not only at home but also while shopping at their stores.