Is IKEA Poland cheapest in Europe?

I’ll answer right at the very begginingyes, but only if you’re not buying living room furniture.

Inspired with BEKANT desk controversy which hit polish web 2 years ago (same desk in IKEA Sweden was 600 zł cheaper than in IKEA Poland), I’ve decided to check the facts. Analysis available on the web compares only few products. This is definitely not enough. Let’s check whatever is possible.

Data

Repobot, or rather a group of repobots, scraped current IKEA prices in most of the European countries, Canada and USA for over 250 000 available products. Here’s a summary of quantities of analysed products by country.

IKEA’s product offer differs from country to country, to maximize the reach of analysis, I match the maximal number of matching products by product id (ie. 690.225.37) for prices in Poland and each country separately. Therefore, there are different numbers of compared products. I refer to country prices only to Poland, not to another country/countries (scope may but may not be different there). Prices have been scraped from IKEA online stores beginning of January 2019, and average FX rates from NBP’s Table A and Table B, dated 2nd of January 2019.

BEKANT desk

Before I get to the point, let me focus on BEKANT desk itself for a while. Let’s see how the price is shaped now.
(Click legend to switch price view to BEKANT PPP index)


The desk is a bit cheaper in Poland than it was in 2016 (still cheaper in Sweden, not that much though). But there are countries where it is much more expensive, as well as such where it is even cheaper than in Sweden.

Clicking yellow element on the legend, you can see how many BEKANT desks, a citizen can afford for the average net wage in the country (Wikipedia: average net wage). It is significantly different picture. I’ll get back to IKEA PPP index later on.

Let’s move to full summary.

IKEA Price Map

As I’ve mentioned, numbers of compared products differs amongst countries. Starting from over 7300 matched (Croatia), which is nearly 88% of entire product offer in Poland, down to around 2400 products (Latvia), bit less below 30% of entire offer.

There are obviously no Canada nor USA on the map, but you can find them on the bar chart, right-hand side.

Poland is indeed the country, where you can buy IKEA products for the lowest price. There are few countries which are only slightly more expensive, but the biggest surprise is Italy, with average price only 0.3% higher. Greece and Cyprus are on the other side of the spectrum, there you need to pay 33% more on average. Let’s see why.

Prices by prodcut category

I put onto the chart categories, where matching with IKEA Poland product offer is no less than 50 products.

Poland is the cheapest in the vast majority of categories. The big surprise is the living room equipment. The average price is nearly 25% lower than in Poland. Buy sofas only in Italy 🙂

IKEA PPP Index

IKEA PPP Index, which I present here, is nothing else than a number of average IKEA products you can buy for an average net wage in a country. Results are presented as a percentage, referenced to the analogous price index in Poland.
For example, 200% means, for an average wage you can buy twice more products from country and Poland common product offer.

With an average price difference of only 30%, this summary should not be a surprise. It is worth looking anyways.

Summary

There are products, and even whole categories of products, cheaper in other countries than Poland. The fact is still that average price of matching products in Poland and in any of analyzed countries is lower in Poland. IKEA Poland has the cheapest nominal product offer.

Again, it is completely different picture if you look at products economical availability expressed through IKEA PPP Index. Which is not surprising as prices varies not that much in Europe (and North America), but average wages do.

Global price strategies have been described in multiple elaborations. Any thought’s on IKEA’s pricing?

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