Industry Analysis

United States Office Supplies Market, Growth & Forecast


The total United States office supplies market excluding furniture was estimated at $18.054 billion USD. The United States B2C office supply market was valued at $10.4 billion in 2020. Growth for the market has been declining over the past 5 years with a CAGR of -8.5% between 2015 and 2020. Details of the market segments have been provided below.

Market Size

  • In 2020, the United States office supplies market was valued at $10.4 billion in terms of sales from stores (B2C) with a decline in growth of -8.5% over the last 5 years.
  • B2C sales are expected to decline by 11.6% in 2020 alone, in part, due to Covid-19.
  • In 2019, the United States office supplies market (excluding paper) was valued at $3.1 billion in terms of sales from manufacturers (B2B) with a decline in growth of -1.5% over the past 3 years.
  • In 2020, the office stationery manufacturing market was valued at $4.6 billion with a decline of -8.1% from 2015-2020.

Number Of Businesses

  • In 2020, there were a total of 9,158 office supply stores in the United States.
  • As of January 2020, there were 437 office supply manufacturing companies in the United States with an average of $7 million in sales per company.
  • In 2020, there were a total of 377 office stationery manufacturers in the United States.

Segments By Type

  • Paper products accounted for 80% of the office supply industry in 2019.
  • Toner accounted for 15% of the industry in 2019.

Research Strategy

In order to determine the United States office supplies market excluding furniture in terms of USD. We began our search by scouring industry reports and market research databases. Unfortunately, all of this research provided the total global market including furniture. We then broke down our research by segment. Through this search, we were able to find the actual market size of office supplies in terms of both B2C and B2B markets. This research included only reports that provided the market size in terms of paper products, toner, and other office supplies without the mention of furniture. Our findings included the retail sale of office supplies as well as the manufacturing of office supplies and the manufacturing of office stationery. To determine the total market we assumed the historical CAGR for manufacturing office supplies applied to 2020 as well. Using this figure, we calculated the estimated market value of office supplies (excluding paper) from manufacturing in 2020 (3.1 billion*0.015=46.5 million; 3.1 billion-46.5 million=3.054 billion). We then combined the market values for each segment to provide an estimated market size of the total market in 2020 (10.4 billion+4.6 billion+3.054 billion=18.054 billion).

Office Supplies: Growth and Forecast

Based on a report from NPD, the overall U.S. office supplies retail sales from various segments such as B2C and B2B increased by 1% in 2016 to reach $12.1 billion. From 2019 to 2026, the estimated growth rate of the U.S. office supplies, stationery, and gift stores market was calculated to be 4.41%. The rest of the available figures and some helpful data points were presented in the section below.

  • From May 2019 to May 2020, the U.S. office supplies sector value increased by 10%.
  • While there are regions such as New England that pulled down the retail division contribution due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there were several other areas that pulled up the industry. The locations that contributed to the growth include the East South Central, West South Central, and East North Central.
  • In the commercial channel, there was some sales uptick as the market began to somewhat recover. The -56% YOY sales in April jumped to -41% YOY in May.
  • The average selling price of office supplies is rising across physical store channels such as food stores (up by 17%) and drug stores (up by 9%).
  • However, sales in online channels are experiencing a downward trend.
  • Based on unit patterns, a general trade down in terms of packaging sizes are happening in several store types except in food stores and drug stores.
  • Some of the retail segments that are contributing to the growth of this market include postal and shipping materials (up by 17%) and shredders (17%: up by 51%).
  • These figures were driven by increasing activities in the DIY home improvement, organization, and crafting space. Some of the popular office supplies being used in these activities include specialty tapes, filing supplies, and other office materials.
  • In the coming months, “back-to-basics, wellness, and activism” are some of the expected key drivers of the growth of this industry.

Annual U.S. Office Supplies Industry Performance by Channel


For 2020, shelter-in-place mandates to minimize the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has forced many employees to work from their homes. These employees have been purchasing office supplies for their home offices.

2020 Year-to-Date SalesSpending by Product

Staples and Office Depot - March 2020 Average Weekly Sales

Future Growth Rate

Research Strategy

To find quantitative data points illustrating the growth of the U.S. office supplies market during the past 3-5 years and the next 3-5 years, we looked through various market research reports such as those from Anything Research, Report Buyer, Wise Guy Reports, Plunkett Research, and other similar sources. Based on this search approach, we were able to find some statistics that can illustrate the movement trend of the U.S. office supplies market that was not presented yet in the earlier report about the size of this market. However, most of the data points found were fragmented and did not completely show the full growth trend of the total U.S. supplies market from the past 3-5 years. The overall market growth rates of the U.S. office supply market from the past 3-5 years were hidden in the paid sections of the market research reports found. For the growth trend in the next 3-5 years, we calculated the growth rate using the CAGR calculator by inputting the available market sizes found for the office supplies, stationery, and gift stores industry. We also tried to look for more continuous growth statistics in the past 3-5 years for this industry. We searched financial reports, business publications, stock market reports, and other similar sources. Based on this search approach, we were not able to find specific numbers that will cover the whole office supplies industry in the U.S. (B2B, B2C, and other segments). What we found were growth segments for certain years that cover a portion of the industry. We tried to aggregate these data points found to triangulate the growth rate but there were not enough specific data points to calculate a viable past growth rate. We also tried to calculate the past 3-5 years’ growth rate using the sales figures of major players in the industry such as Staples and Office Depot but there were not enough data points available that are specific only to office supplies. Given these findings, we presented some of the available quantitative data points from the reports found to illustrate the growth of the market. We also presented the calculated future growth rate in the section above.

Glenn is the Lead Operations Research Analyst at Simple Manifestation with experience in research, statistical data analysis and interview techniques. A holder of degree in Economics. A true specialist in quantitative and qualitative research.

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