Sirius Buying Group has predicted a kitchen renaissance in 2022/23, as the kitchen market bounces back following record movement in the residential sector.
Steve Jones, managing director at Sirius, said: “We have been closely tracking the latest forecasts so we can best advise our retailers as they enter a business-critical time. UK consumers are naturally concerned following news of a 54% rise in the energy price cap from April and the Bank of England predicting that inflation will hit 7.25% this spring.
“With this in mind, we must anticipate that homeowners will want to spend their cash wisely at all price points and that they will be keen to safeguard their purchases with extended warranties.”
Mr Jones said a key trend this year is the importance of technical innovation throughout the market with ever-greater functionality and ease of use highly desirable.
“As people have appreciated the importance of kitchen living solutions due to increased time at home and the desire for flexible working, the potential for product upgrades and replacements is set to accelerate, with the kitchen studio market well-placed to sell the benefits of creating bespoke spaces with all-singing, all-dancing integrated appliances,” he said.
“As a result, we can see consumers are set to invest more in their appliances in line with their desired lifestyle. This enables independents to position themselves as kitchen lifestyle consultants as discerning customers want inspiration and flexibility to enhance their wellbeing rather than prescriptive and overly technical recommendations.”
Mr Jones highlighted that the bonus is that this approach provides an opportunity for sales in higher ticket items, resulting in greater cash margin for the independent retailer.
“The kitchen is now regarded as a gateway to wellbeing and connection so smart tech and wellness are key,” he said. “As always, independents are perfectly poised to tailor their sales to the benefit of their customers to not only meet but surpass user requirements.”
Appliances which enhance the luxury experience at home will score highly with consumers keen to optimise efficiency and space in the high-spec 2022 kitchen.
The focus on ease and effectiveness is now baked into consumer expectations, in tandem with greater awareness of environmentally friendly options such as microfibre filters and steam functions in washing machines.
Statistics from Mintel show that only 22% of consumers have a laundry room, indicating the rich potential for kitchen studios to plan them into renovation or remodelling projects with clients.
Mark Veysey, general manager at Sirius, said there are many strong potential growth areas for independent retailers as a massive 68% of consumers agree that their kitchen holds great significance in their personal wellbeing and this will hold true with a renewed focus on home cooking, following anticipated price rises in the food sector.
Mr Veysey said: “This opens the door to a new generation of cooling appliances which keeps food fresher for longer as well as ovens which can promote healthy eating choices to those who are getting more confident in cooking from scratch instead of relying on convenience foods.
“Going forwards, steam ovens continue to be important to the ‘worried well’ and the active retired who are eager to look after themselves.
“Look out for increasing sophistication in the hot tap market and be prepared to guide your customers through the detailed features and benefits of the latest innovations which deliver filtered water to the home chef who is becoming increasingly creative and keen to enjoy new dishes with minimum effort.”