Next, we’ll pause to consider who spends those dollars: Everyone. Truth be told, there is no one type of consumer here. At the start of 2017, the NRF commissioned a survey among 7,406 consumers, ranging from ages 18 to 65+, and 85% of the respondents said they planned to celebrate Mother’s Day this year.4
I get it—narrowing our consumer base to “Everyone” doesn’t help much. Let’s dive deeper: The same NRF survey showed that as consumers increased in age, they became less likely to celebrate Mother’s Day. However, compared to their younger counterparts, the older generations generally said they are planning to spend more money when they did celebrate. For example, respondents in the 18-24 age group are planning to spend an average of $18.95 on flowers, compared to respondents in the 55-64 age group who are planning to spend an average of $35.04.4 So, let’s not rule anyone out just yet.
Next, let’s consider where consumers are planning to do their Mother’s Day shopping: Unsurprisingly, the youngest consumers said they will online shop more than any other age group (44.7% for ages 18 - 24). More than half said they will also spend their time hunting for the perfect gift at a department store (56.2% for ages 18 - 24).4 The oldest consumers prioritized specialty stores over any other option (24.4% for ages 65+), followed closely by local and small businesses (23.1% for ages 65+).4 Understanding who shops where, marketers can tailor messaging across their different platforms accordingly.
For Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and graduation, consumers planned to snap up greeting cards, gift cards, clothing, electronics, special outings and more, opening up the opportunity to merchants to highlight the best goods and services to fit each occasion. Based on the NRF 2016 and 2017 survey results, moms may be more likely to receive jewelry, dads may be more likely to receive special outings and grads will be the ones needing the necessities to prepare for their next life journey.
Looking ahead, one thing is certain for moms, dads and grads: The average consumer will spend their money in more ways than one to celebrate their loved ones. On average for a Mother’s Day gift in 2017, consumers are projected to spend $186.39,1 on Father’s Day gifts in 2016, they were projected to spend $125.92,2 and on graduation gifts in 2016, they were projected to spend $106.45.3 A greeting card here, a token gift there and a nice dinner out sure does add up.
Make no mistake, the spring season is blooming with strategic marketing opportunities for merchants across all categories, from restaurants to retailers to apparel. Count no one out—it may not be Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa just yet, but it’s still a season for celebrating… and spending.