IKEA announced Monday that it is ending its annual catalog, both in print and online.
The first catalog in 1951 was distributed to customers in southern Sweden and spanned 68 pages. The company printed 285,000 copies.
The catalog’s peak year was 2016, when 200 million copies were distributed in 32 languages across more than 50 markets. A digital version of the print catalog was launched in 2000.
The company said it would make a book of home-furnishing inspiration and knowledge available to IKEA customers next fall.
“Turning the page with our beloved catalog is in fact a natural process, since media consumption and customer behaviors have change,” said Konrad Grüss, managing director of Inter IKEA Systems B.V. , in a statement. Inter IKEA Systems B.V. is the owner of the IKEA concept and the worldwide IKEA franchiser.
“In order to reach and interact with the many people, we will keep inspiring with our home-furnishing solutions in new ways.”
Catalogs, which once filled mailboxes, have become increasingly scarce over the years. L Brands Inc.’s /zigman2/quotes/202062875/composite LB +1.37% Victoria’s Secret ended its famous catalog back in 2016 , for example.
Other retailers, like J.Crew , will send a catalog upon request. RH /zigman2/quotes/200286355/composite RH -7.10% , which makes its “sourcebook” a key part of its marketing, said on its most recent earnings that it would no longer be mailing its catalog.
“We’re not mailing the book, and we’re going to invest our time and energy and resources and make investments in other areas that we think will have real long-term benefit to the business,” said RH Chief Executive Gary Friedman, on a September call, according to FactSet.
Friedman said the company would also use the pullback as an opportunity to determine how productive the book is. With new data, the company can consider whether “maybe because we’re building all these big new stores, we can mail less books.”
IKEA said it has other tools for helping customers to plan their homes, and online has become more important, with e-commerce sales growing 45% in 2019.
“The beloved IKEA catalog as we know it today will not continue,” the company said.