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Rugs Direct Trends Report: Release Date 3/15/2022

The Most Popular Interior Design Styles

Good design is timeliness. While trends are fun, we wanted to investigate what the most popular style was using something more substantial than year-over-year trends.  Instead, we choose the top design destinations on the internet. With an overwhelming amount of user-generated data that has amassed over 10+ years, we wanted to analyze how people have interacted with 21 design styles to understand just how popular the most popular styles are.

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In this study, we tallied up the 21 most common design styles to see which is most popular among 5 large destinations for design inspiration and demand:

  1. Youtube

  2. Houzz

  3. Google Search

  4. Instagram

  5. Pinterest

All the datapoints we collected were the result of online user interactions with each style. For example, hashtags, Youtube Views, how many people search Google, etc.

In total, this study tallied up 278,343,588 user interactions spanning over the last decade to provide a true popularity score.

There's no doubt about it that some of these styles are similar, and some styles might pull aesthetics from other styles. The style aficionados among us may look at some of these styles and consider some of them to be the same, infact. But, the purpose of this study was to gauge how popular each is based from the perspective of a regular admirer of design. While not everyone might know the difference between "farmhouse" and "rustic," the way we post, search, and tag these styles says plenty about what we like.

How did we rank these styles?

We used data from each of these inspiration destinations to quantify how popular each style was.

The datapoints we collected were:

    Youtube: Youtube View Counts & Likes for the Top 30 Videos for each style. These top 30 videos were selected using popular keywords related to finding out more about each style. Total Youtube View Counts recorded in this study totaled 180 Million and Total Youtube Likes totaled 3.6 Million

    Houzz: Houzz features the number of images tagged for each style. Thus, we recorded the number of images when we searched Houzz for each style ie: "Modern" or "Contemporary." Total Tagged Photos on Houzz recorded in this study totaled 9.5 Million

    Google Search: Google Search provides estimated data on the number of people that search for specific keywords. We identified 3 common phrases that are used to search for style-related information. Total Google Searches recorded in this study totaled 700 Thousand Per Month

    Instagram: Instagram provides the number of posts that have been tagged with a particular hashtag. We identified 3 common hashtags that are used to tag for style-related Instagram posts. Instagram Hashtags recorded in this study totaled 42.8 Million

    Pinterest: Pinterest also provides the number of posts that have been tagged with a particular hashtag, so we used the top hashtag for each style. Total Pinterest Hashtags recorded in this study totaled 41.67 Million

Curious about the specifics? What keyword we choose and why? How many likes did each group have? Read more about each destination's breakdown

What Were The Top 10 Most Popular Styles?

 The Most Popular Design Style: Modern 

With each channel tallied up, the number one most popular design style is Modern with an astounding lead over all other styles scoring an 8.89 popularity score. Modern's breakdown by design destination came out to be:

  • #2 on Youtube With View Counts of 25 million & 3.8 million Youtube Likes for Modern's top 30 videos
  • #1 on Houzz with 2.5 million tagged modern photos
  • #1 on Google Search with 130K monthly searches for the keywords in our study
  • #2 on Instagram with 5.5 million hashtags
  • #2 on Pinterest with 6.5 million hashtags

There's no doubt about it. Modern continues to captivate and enthrall all lovers of design.

The 2nd Most Popular Style: Vintage

Vintage came in second scoring an overall 5.16 popularity score, barely edging out Farmhouse who scored 5.12. While Modern was in the top ranks for each design destination, and Farmhouse did well for most of the destinations, Vintage had a little more character.

  • 12th for Youtube with 4 million Youtube Views, and 150K Likes
  • 14th for Houzz with about 206K tagged photos
  • 8th for Google Search with about 30K monthly searches

Vintage had to make up ground somewhere and that's exactly what it did with Instagram and Pinterest coming in as the #1 style for each.

  • The Vintage Hashtags in our study numbered at 8.8 Million on Instagram
  • And, 8.8 Million Hashtags on Pinterest.

The sheer amount of interest on Pinterest and Instagram dwarfed the other styles so much that Vintage placed #2 overall despite only moderate performance on Youtube, Houzz, and Google Search.

The 3rd Most Popular Style: Farmhouse

Farmhouse ranked as the 3rd most popular design style with an overall 5.12 popularity score - a strong lead over Rustic's 4.06 (the 4th top style). While not the #1 style for any specific design destination, Farmhouse had a strong showing in each.

  • #9 for Youtube with over 9.2 Million Youtube Views and 182K Likes
  • #5 for Houzz with 664K tagged photos
  • #2 for Google Search with about 110K monthly searches
  • #5 for Instagram with about 4.2 Million hashtags
  • #3 for Pinterest with about 5.6 Million hashtags

The 4th Most Popular Style: Rustic

Rustic ranked as the 4th most popular design style with an overall 4.06 popularity score

  • Ranked 3rd on Youtube with 18640680 Views & 339903 Youtube Likes
  • Ranked 6th on Houzz with 594417 Tagged Photos
  • Ranked 5th on Google Search with 40600 Monthly Searches
  • Ranked 5th on Pinterest with 3500000 Hashtags
  • Ranked 4th on Instagram with 4402228 Hashtags

The 5th Most Popular Style: Contemporary

Contemporary ranked as the 5th most popular design style with an overall 3.22 popularity score

  • Ranked 7th on Youtube with 12272072 Views & 182523 Youtube Likes
  • Ranked 2nd on Houzz with 1724857 Tagged Photos
  • Ranked 7th on Google Search with 30900 Monthly Searches
  • Ranked 11th on Pinterest with 880000 Hashtags
  • Ranked 13th on Instagram with 719665 Hashtags

The 6th Most Popular Style: Boho

Boho ranked as the 6th most popular design style with an overall 3.20 popularity score

  • Ranked 6th on Youtube with 9139846 Views & 255630 Youtube Likes
  • Ranked 20th on Houzz with 24249 Tagged Photos
  • Ranked 4th on Google Search with 48100 Monthly Searches
  • Ranked 6th on Pinterest with 2900000 Hashtags
  • Ranked 3rd on Instagram with 5028496 Hashtags

The 7th Most Popular Style: Scandinavian

Scandinavian ranked as the 7th most popular design style with an overall 2.89 popularity score.

  • Ranked 11th on Youtube with 6687424 Views & 141120 Youtube Likes
  • Ranked 16th on Houzz with 61416 Tagged Photos
  • Ranked 6th on Google Search with 40400 Monthly Searches
  • Ranked 4th on Pinterest with 5120000 Hashtags
  • Ranked 6th on Instagram with 2674217 Hashtags

The 8th Most Popular Style: Mid-Century Modern

Mid-Century Modern ranked as the 8th most popular design style with an overall 2.37 popularity score.

  • Ranked 5th on Youtube with 11004203 Views & 220127 Youtube Likes
  • Ranked 13th on Houzz with 192946 Tagged Photos
  • Ranked 3rd on Google Search with 95400 Monthly Searches
  • Ranked 16th on Pinterest with 236000 Hashtags
  • Ranked 16th on Instagram with 603132 Hashtags

The 9th Most Popular Style: Traditional

Traditional ranked as the 9th most popular design style with an overall 2.26 popularity score.

  • Ranked 8th on Youtube with 9246048 Views & 192893 Youtube Likes
  • Ranked 3rd on Houzz with 1013602 Tagged Photos
  • Ranked 12th on Google Search with 17000 Monthly Searches
  • Ranked 9th on Pinterest with 1100000 Hashtags
  • Ranked 14th on Instagram with 712848 Hashtags

The 10th Most Popular Style: Minimalist

Traditional ranked as the 9th most popular design style with an overall 2.16 popularity score.

  • Ranked 1st on Youtube with 21114727 Views & 531606 Youtube Likes
  • Ranked 14th on Houzz with 105488 Tagged Photos
  • Ranked 13th on Google Search with 14200 Monthly Searches
  • Ranked 8th on Pinterest with 1500000 Hashtags
  • Ranked 15th on Instagram with 704824 Hashtags

How did each style fare in each channel?

Learn about how each style ranked in each channel and how we structured our study to improve the relevancy and accuracy for each channel

Most Popular Interior Design Styles On YouTube

Youtube

Youtubers seem to be searching for ways to declutter because Youtube's top style was Minimalism. Although Minimalist inspiration was average overall, it has had a huge influence on Youtube ranking #1 above top 5 overall styles (Modern, Vintage, Farmhouse, Rustic & Contemporary). Cottage was another style that scored low overall, but has had a large impact on Youtube

  1. Minimalist:

    21 Million Youtube Views and 531K Likes

  2. Modern:

    25.9 Million Views and 372K Likes

  3. Rustic:

    18.6 Million Views and 339K Likes

  4. Cottage:

    156 Million Views and 305K Likes

  5. Mid-Century Modern:

    110 Million Views and 220K Likes

Youtube Methodology:

Youtube was created in 2005 and the earliest videos in this study date back to 2005. 630 total videos (30 per style) were evaluated with a total of 184,045,933 Total Engagement Values (180,422,025 View Counts & 3,623,908 Likes) as of 2/1/2022.

  1. We chose three keyword phrases for each style that each resulted with high viewcount videos and that are common ways of searching for decor inspiration. These three keywords were:

    • "[Style] Design Ideas" ie: Nautical Design Ideas

    • "[Style] Decor" ie: Nautical Decor

    • "[Style] Home Tour" ie: Nautical Home Tour

  2. We pulled Youtube's 1st 25 videos for each of these keywords, thus getting a group of 75 videos for each style. Because there were generic results for some of these styles, we excluded all videos that did not contain the name of the Style in the Youtube video. This removed results such as "Top 10 Design Styles of 2021" which eliminated generic videos of design inspiration.

  3. We then calculated the total number of View Counts and Likes for the top 30 videos of the original 75 pulled.

  4. We scored total View Counts & Total Likes as an even score. Each style's score was based on what % of all View Counts or Likes that that style had in comparison to a group sum of all the styles.

Most Popular Interior Design Styles On Houzz

Houzz

Houzz is the designer's design destination. Home to countless portfolios and user design submissions, Houzz hosts over 20 million design images.

The top 5 most popular styles on Houzz showed some interesting variance from the other design destinations. Although it was Modern that was the most popular, the two standouts Traditional (#3) and Transitional (#5) since neither of these made another top five.

  1. Modern:

    2.7 Million Tagged Photos

  2. Contemporary:

    1.7 Million Tagged Photos

  3. Traditional:

    1 Million Tagged Photos

  4. Farmhouse:

    664K Tagged Photos

  5. Transitional:

    627K Tagged Photos

Houzz Methodology:

Houzz was created in 2009 and is home to over 20 million total design images. The images we recorded as of 2/1/2022 numbered at 9,560,715.

  1. Houzz features the number of images tagged for each style on pages such as this. Thus, we recorded the number of images tagged when we searched for each style ie: "Modern" or "Tropical"

  2. Each style's score was based on what % of all photos each style had in comparison to the whole.

Most Popular Interior Design Styles On Google

Google Search

The most widely used search engine is used to find information for just about everything and interior style design ideas, decor, and furniture is no different.

Using three very common, highly-searched keyword phrases for each style, we summed the total number of times these keywords were searched for each month in the US. Modern came in first with over 133K searches a month with Farmhouse closely behind it.

  1. Modern:

    133K Monthly Searches

  2. Farmhouse:

    110K Monthly Searches

  3. Mid-Century Modern:

    95K Monthly Searches

  4. Boho:

    48K Monthly Searches

  5. Rustic:

    40.6K Monthly Searches

Google Search Methodology:

Google was founded in 1998. The data used in this study was based on the average estimated searches from 2021, numbering at a total of 700,370 monthly searches.

  1. SEMRush, is a search engine marketing tool that provides estimations for the number of times a keyword is searched for monthly. We identified 3 common phrases that are used to search for style-related information. We used SEMRush to pull monthly search volume for these 3 phrases for each style:

    • "[Style] Decor" ie: Nautical Decor

    • "[Style] Furniture" ie: Nautical Furniture

    • "[Style] Home" ie: Nautical Home

  2. We extracted the estimated number of searched for each of these keywords for each style to create a list of 63 keywords, 3 keywords per style

  3. We then summed each style's keyword group's search volume.

  4. Each style's score was based on what % of monthly searches each style had in comparison to the whole.

  5. Why did we choose these three keywords?

    When investigating Google's Keyword Data, we wanted to make sure we focused on high-volume searches that also had very specific intent. Each of these variations of keywords lead to results very focused on either buying or finding design inspiration related to decor, furniture and the home. If we were to use a less-focused, more generic keyword such as "modern", the intent of what users are searching for would easily lend itself to being less focused on interior design and could encompass anything that is focused on modern, such as "modern dance" or political theory associated with "modern."

Most Popular Interior Design Styles On Instagram

Instagram

Considered the #1 Photo-Sharing App, it makes sense that design lovers would hashtag away design inspiration through photos of homes, decor, projects or homes of envy. On Instagram, Vintage took the #1 spot with over 8.6 million hashtags for the keywords in our study.

  1. Vintage:

    8.8 Million Hashtags

  2. Modern:

    5.7 Million Hashtags

  3. Boho:

    5 Million Hashtags

  4. Rustic:

    4.4 Million Hashtags

  5. Farmhouse:

    4.2 Million Hashtags

Instagram Methodology:

Instagram was founded in 2010. The data used in this study was based on hashtag use for each style with a total of 42,769,570 hashtags recorded as of 2/1/2022.

  1. Instagram provides the number of posts that have been tagged with a particular hashtag. We identified 3 common phrases that are used to search for style-related information. These 3 phrases were:

    • "[Style] Decor" ie: Nautical Decor

    • "[Style] Furniture" ie: Nautical Furniture

    • "[Style] Home" ie: Nautical Home

  2. We extracted the estimated hashtags for each of these keywords for each style to create a list of 63 hashtags keywords, 3 hashtag keywords per style

  3. We then summed each the 3 hashtags for each style.

  4. Each style's score was based on what % of monthly searches each style had in comparison to the whole.

  5. Each style's score was based on what % of hashtags each style had in comparison to the whole.

  6. Why did we choose these three hashtags?

    Because Instagram makes this information easily accessible, the more hashtags we could consider, the more accurate the analysis would be. These three hashtags had large counts across the board and their content closely aligned with the goal of this study. Like Google Search, we did not use generic style hashtags such as "modern" because the intent became increasingly less relevant and less focused on interior design.

Most Popular Interior Design Styles On Pinterest

Pinterest

The ultimate pinboard of inspiration and how tos, Pinterest is a huge destination for those looking for design ideas. Apparently, Vintage rules the hashtag realms ranking #1 again on Pinterest.

  1. Vintage:

    8.8 Million Hashtags

  2. Modern:

    6.5 Million Hashtags

  3. Farmhouse:

    5.6 Million Hashtags

  4. Scandinavian:

    5.12 Million Hashtags

  5. Rustic:

    3.5 Million Hashtags

Pinterest Methodology:

Pinterest was founded in 2009. The data used in this study was based on hashtag use for each style with a total of 41,267,000 hashtags recorded as of 2/1/2022.

  1. Pinterest provides the number of hashtags a keyword has when a user adds a hashtag when creating a post

  2. We took the highest-tagged keyword for each style.

  3. Each style's score was based on what % of hashtags each style had in comparison to the whole.

  4. Why did we choose only one hashtag?

    2 reasons: One, Pinterest provides a small number of hashtags to view hashtag numbers for. Also, the numbers dropped so greatly from the top hashtag for a style to the next (in some cases by millions), that the single hashtag provided enough definition to quantify the popularity of the style.

The Final Rankings of Each Style

How did we produce a score?

1) For each design destination, we created a single score for each style. This was done by taking the total number of values in each set and dividing that by the number of values of a paticuliar style.

For example, there were a total of 41,267,000 million hashtags on Pinterest used for all of the 21 styles we studied. To arrive at Modern's 1.58 Score, we took Modern's total number of hashtags (6,500,000) and divided it by the total of all hashtags for all styles (41,267,000) which resulted in .158. In human terms, this means that out of those 41,267,000 Pinterest hashtags, 15.8% of those were Modern hashtags.

To make the score a little easier on the eyes, we multiplied .158 * 10, to come out of with a slightly larger number (1.58).

2) Each design inspiration destination was provided equal weighting in the overall score. We simply added the individual scores of each destination to create one Total Score. With the exception of Youtube - Houzz, Google Search, Instagram and Pinterest had one key metric. Youtube's score was made up of two metrics - total view and total likes - but Youtube's overall score was given the same weight as each of the others.

Curious about the specifics? What keyword we choose and why? How many likes did each group have? Read more about each destination's breakdown

Most Popular Interior Design Styles

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