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2017 Mother’s Day Consumer Insights Study: Mom’s Not Hitting the Mother Load

It might not be entirely accurate, but Moms have a reputation for graciously accepting any gift they are given—smiling, saying I love it, and saying I love you. That’s how people have gotten away with giving some truly uninspired gifts throughout the years. But according to the Mother’s Day Market Research in our 2017 Mother’s Day Consumer Insights Study, Moms want more than time with their family and the classroom-crafted keepsake.

So, what, apart from elbow macaroni picture frames and clay palmprints, does Mom want this holiday, where will it be purchased, and for how much? What are the gaps and disconnects between mothers' desires, families’ purchase intentions, and retailers' offerings? And how can retailers target the many last-minute Mother’s Day shoppers sure to be frantically browsing brick-and-mortar and virtual aisles the weekend of May 13? Our 2017 Mother’s Day Consumer Insights Study has the answers.

Mothers Going Mother’s Day Shopping

Budgets this year will be pretty consistent with last year, as 65% of all panel survey respondents indicated they planned to spend the exact same amount of money on Mother’s Day gifts this year as last. But younger millennials are a notable exception to this trend, with 45% of younger millennial respondents indicating they planned to spend more this year. Whether this is a sign that younger millennials are economically “movin’ on up” in the world and can thus expand their budgets accordingly, or just that they love their mothers a bit more this year than they did last year, retailers should note that nearly half of them will have a bit more money burning a hole in their pocket.

Consumer Intentions and Actions

It’s not procrastinating if you are thinking about doing it, right? Almost 60% of respondents claim they begin thinking about their Mother’s Day purchases a month before the holiday, which is great—it’s nice to see people get a leg up…but 67% of respondents indicated that, despite their early planning, they don’t actually make their purchases until the week of.  And 10% admitted to waiting until the day of. 

All in all, that means that a 77% of our respondents do not actually purchase gifts until they have one week left on the clock.

But at least some shoppers are getting a head start—and interestingly it seems like the most proactive Mother’s day shoppers are mothers themselves. That’s right: mothers who are both buying and receiving gifts this year are far more likely to both plan (+12%) and purchase (+10%) a Mother’s Day gift at least one month in advance.

Mom is Her Own Biggest Purchase Influencer

Finally, when asked about purchase influencers, respondents seem to be trusting their instincts—rather than turning to social media and online reviews, 65% of shoppers say they choose their purchases because “I know it’s what they like.” This is interesting when considering that over half of all mothers (55%) want a spa-related gift (preferably a mani/pedi or massage) but, when all is said and done, only 20% will actually receive them.  Instead, 45% will receive flowers and/or greeting cards.

What kind of dining experiences does Mom want, and what kind can she expect?  How do trends in jewelry and fashion compare to our 2016 Mother’s Day Consumer Insights Study, and what percent of Mother’s Day Shopping is done online? Find these and other insights by downloading the full study.

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