The quality of IKEA furniture depends upon the product. Most of their products are made from particleboard, fiberboard or cardboard, which is not as durable as solid wood. However, their low prices aren't only due to cheap materials; they also use an efficient system of operation in which customers assemble their own furniture.
Additionally, IKEA keeps their costs low by selling their furniture ready to assemble, rather than intact, saving shipping and packaging costs for the company. By cutting back on these prices, they can transfer their savings to the customer without entirely sacrificing quality.
The quality of some IKEA furniture is called into question because most of it is pressed wood, meaning it is made of wood particles and scraps that are tightly glued together. As a result, it will usually not last a long time. However, IKEA does have some products made of solid wood, and these are of better quality. They are also more expensive.
They also use lesser-quality materials to keep prices down. If they do not use pressed wood, they use fiberboard for their furniture. Their solid-wood furniture is much less common in the store. The most important items to buy as solid wood are items that experience a lot of use and abuse, namely beds, dining tables and kitchen cabinets.