Pop Quiz! What is the second biggest retail shopping season?
A) Father’s Day
If you chose C, then you totally aced this little test. This year parents with school-aged kids are expected to spend more than $828 billion on everything back-to-school. That’s a lot of notebooks! The only other time retailers see higher sales is during the “winter holiday” when holly jolly gift giving takes over consumer buying habits.
To break that down a little bit, families with kids in a K-12 class will spend about $606 dollars this year on everything from clothing and shoes to pens and binders. Multiply that by the roughly 50 million kids enrolled in an elementary or secondary school, and you can see how this quickly becomes a billion dollar opportunity.
But while that equation was relatively simple, navigating this nearly four month season can sometimes be a challenge. In addition to a wide range of first days to consider, parental shopping habits are also changing, meaning their path to purchase is more like a maze than a road.
What do I mean by that? Technology and social media opportunities are always changing, and as it does, so must your digital marketing campaign. Here’s why:
– Online spending is exploding. This year parents are expected to make 7.9% of their back-to-school purchases online. That’s a 15% increase from last year. Factor that into the $828 billion total market and you’re looking at $65 billion in sales.
– While brick and mortar stores are still seeing most of the Back-to-School sales, “Webrooming” or researching a product online before purchasing it in a store, is becoming increasingly popular among parents.
– Parents are relying more on social media sights like Pinterest to organize their back-to-school lists. 25% say they’ll be using the sight to research lunch and snack ideas for their kids.
– Blogs and social media are now generating as many purchases as the traditional methods like television and magazines.
Of course, digital marketing is only part of this complex story. Which is why we here at The Shelf took a deeper dive into this season with our newest infographic. Check it out! We’ve included everything from a look at who is making the purchasing decisions and which parent tends to spend more money to explaining how much a product’s price point can influence a purchase.
Sabrina is the Marketing Manager for The Shelf, an influencer marketing platform that enables brands and agencies to connect with the most relevant influencers. They currently serve businesses in the fashion, beauty, lifestyle, travel, food and family space. She’s also the co-creator of fashion blog, StreetScoutMe.
Elena is founder of a technology PR agency that works with startups to billion-dollar companies. She is passionate about helping marketers and small business owners with practical publicity strategies, which she's also using for her own bling flip flop company.
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