UK shoppers have increased enthusiasm and spending plans for Mother’s Day, Savvy shows


New research from leading retail and shopper marketing agency, Savvy, has revealed Mother’s Day spending plans for UK shoppers. The survey (of 1,000 household shopping decision makers) indicates an increased level of shopper involvement this year, presenting retailers with a great opportunity to inspire shoppers and increase sales.

Alastair Lockhart, insight director at Savvy Marketing, said:  “Mother’s day is one of the most lucrative calendar events. However, our research suggests that despite increased interest from shoppers in spending their money on the occasion, the retail experience often fails to meet their expectations. 18 percent of shoppers say they would like to see retailer invest more in the event.”

Key findings:

  • Who will be celebrating the event?

o   68% of UK shoppers are planning to celebrate Mother’s day this year – up three percent on 2015

o   Women remain more engaged in celebrating the event than the men – 73% compared with 61% respectively but men are now much more involved than last year (up eight percent on last year)

o   83% of all shoppers planning to get involved agree that Mother’s day is a special event and 61% are looking forward to the day

o   59% agreed with the statement that ‘Mother’s day is a day we share with all generations of the family’ and 68% agreed that it was a day that the family spends together

o   Trading up – 28% of shoppers said they tend to trade up to buy more expensive food and drinks on the day – up four percent on 2015 figures

o   Planning in advance what shoppers are going to buy for the event is more likely this year – 55% compared with 42% last year

o   67% of shoppers agree that they ‘don’t mind spending more to make Mother’s Day special’ up 28% on 2015 figures 

  • How will we be purchasing gifts?

o   38% of shoppers plan to purchase Mother’s day presents online

o   As for buying instore, 53% of shoppers agreed that Mother’s day products presented there are boring and lack inspiration

o   If better products were available (online or instore) 42% of shoppers said they would be prepared to spend more.

o   Spending more on gifts this year is on the cards for 37% of shoppers

  • What are shoppers planning to buy this year?

o   Traditional gifts of shop bought cards, flowers and chocolates win out and less non-purchase gifting taking place

o   Topping the shopping list this year are shop bought cards with 57 percent planning to buy these (up 24% of 2015 figures)

o   Gifts of flowers are planned by 31% of shoppers (up just one percent on last year) and chocolates place third with 21% giving the gift of cocoa

o   30% of shoppers are planning to buy a personalised gift

o   Homemade cards and gifts are much less likely this year with just seven percent apiece included in purchase plans compared with 24% and 12% respectively in 2015

o   14% were not expecting to purchase any gifts this year

  • What do shoppers want from retailers?

o   A good range of gifts to buy to suit different budgets topped the wish list – with 39% of shoppers asking for this

o   37% of shoppers want ideas for presents. To be inspired

o   A dedicated aisle for the event appeals to 27% of shoppers

o   20% of shoppers want all of the items needed to cook breakfast, lunch and dinner in one place

o   A premium flower shop was a desire for 16 percent of shoppers

o   Competitions to win gifts for mum’s appeals to 15% of shoppers

Lockhart said: “As we’ve seen across other calendar events, the value retailers are driving much of the market growth. The likes of Aldi and the pound stores continue to ramp up their offers, helping drive opportunistic sales.

This presents a growing challenge to the big four grocers and many high street retailers, that still account for the majority of Mother’s Day sales but face growing competition. It is our view that greater investment and, more importantly, innovation and creativity will be required over the next few years to really take advantage of trade up opportunities and unlock the full potential of the event. At the moment, in all honesty, it can feel a little bit samey each year.