E-commerce retailers have grown magnificently this year, and it’s become an almost saturated industry. As a result, looking for your favorite accessories, home decor, and even furniture can be quite a task if you are not aware of the best e-commerce retailers to choose from. ObjectsHQ aims to solve that problem with a whole new marketplace for furniture. Coming from the crowdfunding success of Genius Brands LLC, this is definitely one of our favorite marketplaces for furniture yet.
In response to COVID-19 stay-at-home restrictions, consumers are increasingly turning to the internet to purchase household furniture and decor items. This trend is bad news for the growing list of retailers closing doors—such as Pier 1 and Sur La Table. But it presents a tremendous opportunity for e-commerce retailers. And especially those that help consumers filter through millions of options and deliver the products through a low-cost direct-to-consumer model. That’s where this marketplace for furniture comes in.
Alfred Chehebar, the founder of Genius Pack and CEO of Genius Brands LLC—a portfolio of digitally native e-commerce brands—is breaking into the online furniture market by launching ObjectsHQ, a direct-to-consumer furniture company promising “a new kind of e-commerce experience for modern furniture.”
The market for online furniture sales
The US market for online household furniture is booming with annual revenue of $45.7 billion and annualized growth of 15.9% between 2015 and 2020, according to IBISWorld. But the sheer number of options makes purchasing decisions difficult.
Having recently renovated his Brooklyn, New York, home, Chehebar experienced the frustration of online furniture shopping firsthand. “After clicking through online catalogs of so many overpriced products, I knew there had to be a better way to purchase furniture and renovate our living spaces.”
Shopping for furniture online is frustrating because consumers struggle to filter through millions of products spread across hundreds of websites. Chehebar explains that with ObjectsHQ, their design-first curation team scours through thousands of products, selects only the best of the best, and provides direct-to-consumer pricing so that consumers can shop designer looks and premium products without paying middleman margins.
The direct-to-consumer model
Since 2013, Chehebar has been refining the direct-to-consumer model. He founded Genius Pack, which offers high-quality luggage and travel products focused on extreme functionality to eliminate the hassles of travel. The company received rave reviews for the innovative, space-saving luggage and its patented compression technology. So Genius Pack enjoyed skyrocketing sales and healthy revenue growth each year since launching. Then COVID-19 hit.
Travel restrictions in response to COVID-19 sent the travel and tourism industry—and many ancillary businesses—into a tailspin. “We saw an immediate drop in demand, so we rolled up our sleeves and made incremental changes to weather through what has become a new reality,” says Chehebar. “We don’t know if or when travel demand will return to recent levels, nor are we relying on the matter. The launch of our newest project couldn’t come with better timing.”
In anticipation of the October 13 launch, the ObjectsHQ marketplace for furniture is creating buzz by inviting prospective customers to participate in a prelaunch contest to win a cash prize of $10,000. Through the point-based raffle, people earn 10 points for every referral. Runner-ups receive e-credits ranging from $250–$500.
In many ways, the initiative is similar to the Jet.com launch strategy, which propelled Jet.com’s subscriber growth. Ultimately Walmart acquired it for $3.3 billion.
Leveraging the parent company’s portfolio
The company will leverage its existing infrastructure at Genius Brands LLC, a portfolio of digitally native e-commerce brands founded by Alfred Chehebar in 2011. The portfolio consists of Genius Pack, ObjectsHQ, Aer de Aer, and Marcy McKenna.
So are you ready to explore this premium marketplace for furniture at an affordable price? Share with us in the comments below.