Sunday, February 13, 2011

So What's Fido Getting for Valentine's Day?

Valentine’s Day isn’t just about sharing the love.  It’s one of the major spending holidays in the US and an indicator for economic growth and consumer trends.  So I was interested to see a survey published by the National Retail Federation (NRF) that showed that since 2007, the last pre-recessionary year, US retail spending habits for Valentine’s Day have changed.

In particular, there’s a definite upward trend in folks spending on gifts for their pets.  There are also more dollars being spent on jewelry which I hope means that the “bling” you just purchased is for me and not for Spot.  The NRF’s 2011 Valentine’s Day Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey also found that candy and apparel sales should all provide a winter time boost for retailers.  In fact the overall forecast for the total 2011 Valentine’s Day spending is $15.7 billion.  This is an increase of about 11% over 2010’s forecast of $14.1 billion but still below 2008’s of $17.0 billion.

But what about cards you ask?  After all, Valentine’s Day is the second-biggest card-giving holiday in the US.  As it turns out, according to the NRF’s survey, greeting cards continue to be the most popular gift option at 52.1%.  However, in 2009 Experian Simmons reported that eCards were just as popular as the traditional paper ones.  And I imagine that eCard popularity has increased in the last two years along with the adoption of mobile phones.  So I’m betting that this year eCards will probably surpass the traditional ones.

On flowers, the Experian research found that younger and older consumers are most likely to give flowers evidently because they can’t think of another present. This could mean that flowers are either a last-minute gift choice, or that consumers think flowers are appropriate for any occasion which is of course, what florists have been telling us for years.

As usual, men are projected to spend the most on Valentine’s Day gifts.  In the NRF’s survey, men said that they plan to shell out twice as much as women, ($159 versus $76).  But remember this is “self-reported” and in my experience a loved one’s perception and their reality often prove to be two entirely different things. No matter, give a kiss anyway and you have a great February 14th.  As for me, I’m off to buy a nice celebratory chewy for Mellow or maybe I should get her that double-fleece night reflective doggy coat! 
See also Mashable's Post, Social  Networking Americans' Valentine's Day Plans! 

Chart: NRF_Vday

This chart was generated using iCharts, a web-based solution for online data visualization. iCharts are interactive charts that can be created from complex data sets or from ad-hoc data sets. iCharts charts can also be connected to a remote data source via an API. iCharts offer a variety of interactive features. Viewing Information Content 1. Data Values: Hover over the chart and detailed data values will pop-up. 2. Comments: Float your cursor over the elements of the chart to view more detailed information about the data or to review comments, if any. 3. Show/Hide Data Series: In the case of multiple data series, you can control which data to include by selecting or deselecting the information of your choice. 4. Data Span: In the case of large data sets, you can move a slider on the bottom of the chart to display additional data points or zoom in and out to see various time spans. 5. Hyperlinks: Logos, images and specific text elements in the chart can be hyperlinked. The hyperlink is displayed when you hover the cursor over the text. Making it Your Own 1. Save: Save the chart as a static image in various formats 2. Print: Print the chart as an individual image. Sharing the Chart: You can embed the chart to any website simply by clicking on the embed link at the bottom. You will be prompted to copy the embed code. Now you can paste the embed code onto any website, blog or wiki you'd like the chart to be in. -- Photo By: clarescupcakes.co.uk
Tags:
NRF_Vday
Powered By: iCharts | create, share, and embed interactive charts online