Published On: 08/07/2013

Back To SchoolIf you have gone shopping at this summer you may have been surprised to see back-to-school supplies already being prominently featured. With students returning to class in less than a month, the back-to-school shopping spree is about to increase.

The seven weeks between school years has proven to be retail’s second most important selling period behind the winter holidays, with $84 billion spent last year alone. ShopperTrak is projecting that sales will increase in August by 4.3 percent in 2013.

Many retailers are also offering specific promotions, either to attract more sales traffic or target a specific demo. Some examples below:

  • Sears: offering eCoupons and sales associates to bring purchases to cars if requested
  • Best Buy: targeting older students with gift card promotions for certain purchases
  • Target: will spend about $160 million on measured media according to Kantar Media

Even state governments are getting in on the action – at least 17 U.S. states have offered back-to-school tax breaks.

There are other trends worth examining. The National Retail Federation surveyed more than 5,700 adults, who indicated they will do comparative shopping. 32% of families are doing so online, making their purchases on the web as well.

It has not been a complete spending spree, however – 77% of those polled are still being cautious in this economy. Still, fewer consumers say they are buying generics – the number of consumers saying they will stick to generic items or sales is down 13% according to a new Big Insight survey.

Sources: CNBC | Advertising Age | Ad Age cmo Strategy