Furniture retailers offer products that are sometimes referred to as case goods or upholstered goods. Case goods imply wooden furniture, while upholstered goods refer to anything covered in textiles. The majority of furniture retailers provide extensive selections of furniture for consumers to choose from, but some stores focus on one specialty area of furniture. The business of operating a furniture retail store encompasses merchandising, sales management, inventory management, and credit financing when applicable.
Demand predominantly exists in this industry for bedroom, living room, and dining room furniture, closely followed by upholstered furniture. This demand is driven primarily by new home sales, the need to replace old furniture, as well as new business formations and employment growth (for office furniture). Competition exists between furniture stores and outlets, mass merchandisers, and department stores. Smaller furniture stores concentrate on offering unique furniture products that appeal to specific consumers. Overall profitability in the furniture retailing industry is reliant upon the effectiveness of marketing and merchandising.