For online sellers, the 2022 back-to-school season sale has begun. Most back-to-school shopping usually takes place in late July and early August.
Sales set to reach record high
Back in December 2021, Shopkick predicted that 45% of consumers would see their expenses only increase in 2022. Due to the inflation, inventory shortages, and labor market shortages.
Despite inflation eroding the purchasing power of many consumers, retailers expect sales to hit a record high of $74 billion this school season. Many families begin preparing for their children’s return to school.
According to Statista, the average planned back-to-school expenditure per household in the US is increasing year on year. By 2022, it will reach around $865.
Spending on electronics or computer-related equipment is estimated at $293.05, making it the most dominant spending category. $263.63 for clothing and accessories. And $168.11 for footwear. School supplies are estimated at $139.56.
Back-to-school season consumer portrait
In addition to students, the mainstay of back-to-school shopping, parents, and teachers are also two major consumer groups that need attention.
Around half of the parents choose to shop online for the back-to-school season products their children need.
A Back-to-School Shopping Survey in the US reported that online shopping sites (59%) were the most popular with digital shoppers. Then retailers’ websites (50%) and mobile apps (26%). 75% of respondents said they would buy directly through the advertised link if the product in the mobile ad was relevant to them.
Therefore, marketing can target parents’ preferences by emphasizing the safety, durability, and environmental friendliness of products.
Research shows that male parents spend $790.3 on shopping during the back-to-school season, up from $607.8 for women. Male parents are sometimes more quick to make shopping decisions than their female counterparts. Targeting the preferences of male parents may yield higher returns.
In addition, many teachers pay for classroom decorations out of their own pockets when they return to school, which is a segment that could be considered for entry.
Back-to-school season selection tips
Once you have a clear picture of your target audience, it is important to understand the categories that are hot during the back-to-school season. This will allow you to adjust your product and marketing strategy in the shop.
According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), the back-to-school needs of students vary by age group. Looking ahead to the 2021 back-to-school season, the top three expected purchases for K-12 (kindergarten through high school) students are electronics, clothing, and shoes. While the top three expected purchases for college students are electronics, dorm/apartment furniture, and clothing.
Early childhood education supplies
Early learning supplies, building blocks, coloring pencils, baby gates, an indoor trampoline, and children’s school bags.
Lunchboxes, water bottles, school bags, calculators, educational games, STEM supplies, pencils, calligraphy pens, notebooks, and whiteboard calendar sets.
Tablets, smartphones, laptops, headphones.
Student sporting goods
Sports watches/smart bracelets and accessories, sports bikes, e-scooters.
Campus teaching/office equipment
Mobile phone tripod with LED, webcam, printer, 3D printing filament, toner/cartridges, heat press, tables and chairs, classroom facilities, carpet.
Sellers need to be aware that demand for footwear is strong during the back-to-school season, with prices rising by 5.8% due to inflation. But this did not quench consumer enthusiasm for footwear.
While most sectors have been affected by inflation, footwear sales have remained relatively stable. This is because many consumers prefer to spend less on food and drink and still buy their favorite shoes.
Footwear aimed at K12 students should pay attention to comfort and practicality, while college students are more concerned with fashion on top of that. Sellers can track the latest footwear trends on Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram.
Hot Product Recommendations
Multifunctional LED table lamp
Table lamps with multiple lighting modes, sensitive controls, eye protection, and a USB charging port or wireless charger base are more popular.
Food grade silicone bowls, silicone bags, and silicone cups
Silicone items are BPA, PVC, and latex free and will not pollute or damage the environment. Making them more popular with consumers. As well as storing food, students use them to store cosmetics, jewelry, small accessories, and more.
Type-C 4-in-1 functional converter
The 4-in-1 converter can connect several different ports at the same time, avoiding the hassle of repeatedly unplugging and charging ports. It is very popular with students because it enables simultaneous internet access, screencasting, and charging while playing.
Multifunctional plug and socket
Plugs with USB ports are now more popular than traditional plugs. In general, students prefer products that charge quickly, have a good arrangement of plugs, have multiple safety measures, and do not cause damage to the devices they use.
Ear plugs and eye masks
To study, sleep and revise for exams without being affected by noise, many students buy noise-proof earplugs. Every year, on the eve of new students’ entrance and examinations, is the peak season for selling earplugs and eye masks.