Adults outgrow IKEA at age 34. Until then, we’re happy with buying the same medium-to-low quality furniture that everybody else has. But eventually we start to prefer something a little more individual, and a little longer-lasting.
Priceonomics combed through 10,000 user responses from data provided by online money-lender Earnest to figure out how a person’s IKEA usage changes over their life. The numbers showed that Peak IKEA occurs through our mid-twenties to mid-thirties, after which we move on. Priceonomics calls this the IKEA Decade, although maybe that should be called the DEKÅDE.
As people age, they move on to other brands. Lowe’s, for example, is hot stuff for the over fifties, and those in their forties might be found cruising the aisles at Home Depot, Restoration Hardware, or Rooms To Go. Perhaps these older folks skew to a demographic that prefers to build things themselves rather than toss away the old and buy new. Of all the big retailers, IKEA is the only one to have a peak customer age under 30–the actual number is 24 years old.
How about other trends? Looking at the numbers by gender, we see that the number one store for women is Bed Bath and Beyond, and for men, Home Depot. The stereotypes remain in full force. What about location? The numbers here show the percentage of Earnest customers who shop at IKEA, broken down by state.
At the top is Oregon, with 47.5% of Earnest clients shopping there. At the bottom is Idaho, with just 2.9%. California comes in at number 5, with 37.6%, and New York is 10th, with 28.1%. Interestingly, says Priceonomics, the ranking isn’t correlated to IKEA store locations. That is, the top four states each have only one, apparently very busy, IKEA store.
Perhaps there’s another reason that people quit IKEA in their thirties. It’s a well-known fact that couples break up when they visit IKEA together, so maybe the drop-off in IKEA attendance is down to pragmatism. Once you finally meet the partner of your dreams in your thirties, you don’t want to risk your future happiness on a trip to buy a cardboard coffee table, or an amusing-yet-stylish toilet brush.