Valentine’s Day for Grocery Stores

Valentine’s day is just around the corner and two things are on every grocer’s mind: what to do for your significant other and how to make the most money. Sorry folks, this article only concerns the latter. This romantic holiday has been going on for centuries but this year promises to be the biggest. Let us profile some trends and predictions relevant to your questions as a grocer.

Total spending, according to the National Retail Federation, will reach $18.9B, a survey-high, a total of $142.31 per person (an increase of over 6%). People will mostly be buying (and spending) on: 91% on significant others ($87.94), 58.7% other family members ($26.26) and (to our delight), people will spend and average of $6.30 on classmates and teachers. As expected, romantic gifts are the biggest share of the pie but one shouldn’t neglect other costumers’ needs; costumers are looking to save time and money on gifts for friends and might be more likely to choose a grocery store (as opposed to, say, jewelry where grocers rarely dabble). Now that we know who is it being spent on, let’s see how the money is being spent(1):

How often and how much are people planning on spending this Valentine'sm

How often and how much are people planning on spending this Valentine’s

As you can see, most of the money is being spent on jewelry, but most of the gifts are candy and flowers. The opportunity lies not in capturing the jewelry spending, but using your position as a grocer to attract all those people looking for minor gifts. Once they are in the store, you know what to do. Polls conducted in between 2007 and 2013 show the behavior of costumers during Valentine’s. Going out  seems to have taken the highest hit during the recession; people going out on dates have not recovered since the recession. Most other activities have remained somewhat stable. See how they’ve changed across time here(2):

You can see how different types of purchases have changed through the years.

You can see how different types of purchases have changed through the years.

Now that we know what people are buying, we can understand how large grocer’s share of the pie is. Of all those surveyed, 89% had purchased a V-day gift in the same store where they had purchased groceries and 72% intended on doing it this year. Over half (57%) of these shoppers say they prefer gifts grouped in a single location, and 45% of them want in-store signs to direct them to offers. Only 37% stressed the importance of having information highlighted in circulars and flyers(3). The motion is towards convenience and easy: people looking for deals will most likely use other media.

We have collected interesting merchandising and display ideas in the Sutti Pinterest page. We hope they help!

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-The Sutti Team