Looking to determine how popular carpets remain globally and how rug sales have been supported by the greater use of hard surface flooring?
Read more for the analysis by region, by country and by market.
This Freedonia industry study analyzes the $53 billion global carpets and rugs industry.
It presents historical demand data (2012, 2017, and 2022) and forecasts (2027 and 2032) by product (carpet, rug) production process (tufted, woven, other carpets and rugs), market (residential, nonresidential, transportation), application (new, remodeling) and major global region and country. Annual historical data and forecasts are also provided from 2019 to 2026. The study also evaluates company market share and competitive analysis on industry competitors including Mohawk Industries, Shaw, and Engineered Floors. Featuring 230 tables and 76 figures – available in Excel and Powerpoint!
Global demand for carpets and rugs is forecast to increase 2.3% per year to 5.4 billion square meters in 2027, valued at $63.7 billion. Market advances will be supported by:
increased construction of new residential and nonresidential buildings, particularly in the Asia/Pacific and Africa/Mideast regions
rising usage of carpet tile in nonresidential buildings due to their ease of installation and replacement
a global rebound in motor vehicle production
However, carpets continue to lose share to hard surface flooring, especially in countries where wall-to-wall carpeting has historically been popular, such as the US, Canada, and the UK. Despite this, rugs will continue to see opportunities in these markets as they can be used with hard surface flooring for decorative or utilitarian purposes.
Carpet Losing Share to Hard Surface Flooring, but Carpet Tile Offers Opportunities
Globally, carpets and rugs have lost market share to hard surface flooring over the past decade and will continue to do so through 2027. Products such as luxury vinyl tile have made massive market inroads in the large carpet markets of the US and Western Europe, particularly the residential side. Despite sluggish performance for wall-to-wall carpet in that market, carpet tiles continue to increasingly see use in the nonresidential market, where these products' durability and easier installation when compared to broadloom carpeting make them ideal for buildings that see high levels of foot traffic.
Popularity of Hard Surface Flooring & Cultural Preferences Bolster Rug Sales
As wall-to-wall carpeting continues to fall out of favor in the large US and European markets, the rising use of hard surface flooring is creating opportunities for area rugs and mats in building construction applications. In particular, woven rugs – which can impart a more luxurious atmosphere in corporate headquarters, hotels, and resorts – will benefit from strong growth in nonresidential building construction in the Asia/Pacific and Africa/Mideast regions. Additionally, above average population growth in areas of the latter region that have significant numbers of Muslims will support demand for prayer rugs, particularly in Saudi Arabia.
Rising Motor Vehicle Production Aids Demand for Carpets & Rugs
Although it is the smallest carpet and rug market, transportation will account for sizable share of absolute gains as motor vehicle production improves significantly following difficulty during the pandemic. After weathering a significant drop in production in 2020, a combination of supply chain issues – most notably a semiconductor shortage – and high interest rates in a number of countries restrained greater output growth. With most supply chain issues having either resolved themselves or eased significantly, production is poised to grow at a rate more in line with pre-pandemic periods. As such, demand for needlepunch carpeting, which accounts for the majority of transportation demand, will rebound at a healthy rate.
Historical Market Trends
Annual carpet and rug demand is most heavily influenced by trends in the construction industry. Globally, demand for carpets and rugs in volume terms is somewhat insulated from economic variations in new construction activity because of the large replacement demand in residential and nonresidential building applications:
A large base of installed carpeting exists, much of which is subject to high levels of wear and thus will require replacement at some point as a matter of course
Carpets and rugs may be damaged before the end of their lifespan by building fires or severe weather, requiring new flooring to be installed.
Because rugs also serve as a decorative purpose, they may be replaced before the end of the product lifespan if a consumer desires to change the appearance of the structure in which they are installed.
As economies develop in low-income countries, the number of homes without formal floor coverings decreases, providing more opportunities for carpet and rug suppliers in times of lower construction activity.
However, due to currency and pricing effects, volatility in value terms can be quite significant.
Demand by Product
Through 2027, global demand for carpets and rugs is forecast to increase 2.3% annually to 5.4 billion square meters.
Growth in the rug market is projected to greatly outpace that of the carpet market, primarily due to:
continued market inroads made by luxury vinyl tile in the US and Europe, which is taking substantial share away from wall-to-wall carpeting in the world’s largest markets for carpet
hard surface flooring gaining market share worldwide, which increases the likelihood of accent and decorative rugs to cover portions of the existing floor covering product
Production by Region
Through 2027, the Asia/Pacific region will remain the top producer of carpets and rugs globally:
China will maintain its leading position in machine-made global carpet and rug manufacturing
Production capacities in India have increased significantly in recent years, as a result, exports have increased at a substantial pace since 2017
Japan will continue to be a major global producer of automotive carpets and rugs
Due to a recent surge in exports in the Turkish carpet market, the Africa/Mideast region has overtaken both the North American and West European markets and is now the world’s second largest carpet and rug producer on a regional basis.
North America has experienced a consistent decline in carpet production in volume terms over the past five years due to weak domestic demand (as well as in the key export markets of Canada and Western Europe), as preferences for hard surface flooring, particularly luxury vinyl tile, continue to shift at a rapid rate. Given these market conditions, many major carpet manufacturers have responded by expanding their hard surface flooring production capabilities as carpet and rugs continue to lose favor.
Additionally, the mature nature of both the US and West European carpet and rug markets has restrained stronger growth opportunities for producers in these areas.
International trade in carpets and rugs is significant due to the light weight of these products, which makes them amenable to shipping.
In recent years, Turkey has surpassed China as the world’s largest net exporter of carpets and rugs. This is due in part to improving diplomatic relations with Saudi Arabia, which has resulted in a surge in exports to the country. Additionally, the continued development of several economies in the Africa/Mideast region has greatly increased export opportunities for Turkish carpet and rug suppliers.
China is expected to remain a leading exporter of carpets and rugs. The country is a major producer of tufted and woven carpets and rugs, which are competitive in developed nations due to their versatility and low cost.
Other notable carpet and rug exporters include:
Most countries are net importers of carpets and rugs. The US had the largest trade deficit in 2022. Many countries in Western Europe – including the UK, France, and Germany – are major net importers of carpets and rugs, as is Canada.
Global average prices for carpets and rugs in US dollar terms are impacted by a variety of factors, including:
raw materials costs
the geographic distribution of demand
Product prices tend to be higher in developed countries, in part due to generally higher income and materials price levels. In addition, the product mix in developed countries includes a greater share of high-end products, while demand in developing countries tends to consist of basic, low cost product types.
Prices for carpets and rugs are expected to see slight growth as labor and materials costs rise. Manufacturer efforts to offer products with enhanced aesthetics and performance properties – such floor as ultra-soft carpeting and rugs with better resistance to wear and staining, which can be sold at higher price points than standard varieties – will support advances.
However, the rising share of global demand held by developing countries, where price levels are generally lower, will moderate global average price gains. Additionally, growth will be restrained by the increasing use of recycled and reclaimed materials in US and European carpet and rug production. Fibers made from recycled materials cost less than those made from virgin resins, supporting their use among manufacturers looking to control costs.