With Valentine's Day less than two weeks away, shoppers are just about ready to finalize their buying decisions. Last year's data suggests that sales will increase dramatically a week before the holiday of love and will peak in some categories just a few days before. Read on to be sure your promotional plans are in line with this holiday's shopping trends:
Gift categories continue to expand beyond the traditional
For many of us, Cupid's holiday isn't just about expressing love to a significant other. I send gifts to several special people in my life, taking care to choose something that I know will delight them. This year's list includes gourmet chocolates for my grandmother, flowers for a favorite aunt, and a Star Wars bouquet of nine plush characters for my nephew, whose collection of fan-based memorabilia occupies every available inch of space in his bedroom.
Jewelry has always been a favorite gift of mine to receive. This year, however, I find myself wishing for an adornment from the consumer electronics category—a smart watch.
Sales activity intensify February 8th and peak February 10th
Last year, sales in many categories ramped up beginning on Monday before the holiday, most likely due to shipping deadlines for the Saturday holiday. Because Valentine's Day falls on a Sunday this year, shipping concerns are similar.
Expect sales activity for many categories to peak on Wednesday, February 10. In 2015, the following categories showed strong sales in the final days before the holiday: Flowers, Gifts, Gourmet, Consumer Electronics, Computer Hardware, and Electronic Games. The Discounts category, which includes dinner and romance deals, showed a peak on Wednesday, just three days before the big day. Gift cards, always popular for last minute shoppers, saw their peak sales just two days before Valentine's Day. Greeting cards, which include e-cards, saw the strongest activity from Wednesday through the holiday itself.
Fan-related gifts in the mix in 2016
As last year's figures indicate, gifts to show our affection for loved ones come from a variety of categories. This year fan-related items could be best sellers.
Gift retailer ThinkGeek, for example, expects items like a Star Wars plush bouquet, an X-Wing Silk Tie, plus quirky items like a pixel heart heat changing mug and an anatomic heart specimen coasters, to be their top holiday sellers this year.
No matter what the category, be sure that your best promotions are front and center to catch the attention of customers who are ready to buy. Wishing you lots of success in the busy week ahead!