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Valentine’s Day Still Hits Sweet Spot

Day continues to be among the top holidays for sellers.

Sweethearts will show their love this year with plenty of candy, cards, flowers and other goodies for their sweeties, but they will keep their budgets in mind as they buy.

A survey by researcher BIGinsight finds that, on average, consumers will spend $130.97 on presents for their loved ones, a slight increase from last year’s $126.03 average. In all, Valentine’s Day spending is projected to reach $18.6 billion this year, with men expected to spend more than women—an average of $175.61 versus $89.

What online merchants may be happiest about regarding the upcoming holiday is that an estimated 26 percent of shoppers will buy their presents online—the highest percentage in the survey’s history, BIGinsight notes.

Matthew Shay, the National Retail Federation’s president and CEO, says the increase in total spending is small compared to last year, but he adds that Valentine’s Day continues to be “one of the biggest gift-giving holidays of the year.”

Twenty-six percent of shoppers will buy their presents online—the highest percentage in the survey’s history

“It’s great to see that millions of Americans are still looking forward to celebrating with their loved ones,” he continues.

Candy, and flowers, and jewelry, oh my

To stay on budget, shoppers are expected to buy a variety of gifts, officials note. About 51 percent will buy candy, 36.6 percent will go with flowers, 19.7 percent will choose jewelry, 15.6 percent will buy clothing and 15 percent will opt for gift cards, the survey finds.

“The mantra ‘It’s the thought that counts,’ might be most applicable for holidays like Valentine’s Day, and there’s no question that this year’s budget-conscious gift givers will keep this in mind while out looking for the perfect gift,” adds Pam Goodfellow, BIGinsight’s Consumer Insights director.

Sellers should keep in mind that couples won’t be the only ones celebrating—and buying for—Valentine’s Day, officials add. Though shoppers will spend the most on items for their significant others, spending an average or $73.75 on them, 60.6 percent will buy something for family members, 25.2 percent for friends, 13.2 percent for co-workers and 20 percent for pets.

In fact, they’ll spend a total of $815 million on their four-legged friends, according to the survey.

Mobile devices will play a big role in buying, as 40 percent of smartphone owners are expected to use their devices to shop for presents and about 47 percent of tablet owners will use their devices to find the right gifts, the survey finds.

About the author

Olga Munoz
Olga Munoz is editor of In addition to writing news and feature articles about e-commerce, selling trends, online marketing and other topics of interest to online sellers, Olga manages the site's social media efforts. A journalism graduate of Chico State, Olga says her favorite part of being a journalist is learning interesting facts that help put stories into perspective, attending industry events and meeting interesting people "that leave you smiling, even in tough situations." Opinions expressed here may not be shared by The Online Seller and/or its principals.

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