Electronics are also driving budgets higher, with shoppers expected to spend $212.35 on these items—up 7 percent from 2013. College students, who account for nearly one-third of back-to-school spending, are expected to spend an average of $243.79 on laptops, tablets and the like—the most they've spent on this category since 2009.
Shoe and apparel retailers are also likely to see a boost, with both categories expected to post gains. While department and discount stores are anticipated to receive the majority of this traffic, more than half of back-to-school shoppers are expected to visit specialty apparel stores, according to the survey.
Read MoreRetail crosses a line with back-to-school deals
Although the teen unemployment rate remains high, the demographic is expected to have a larger influence on back-to-school sales this year, with the average 13- to 17-year-old planning to spend $34.40. That's up from $30.13 last year. What's more, most parents said at least half of their purchases are influenced by their children.
But despite a projected increase in spending, eight in 10 respondents said their spending plans are still impacted by the economy, a slight increase from last year. As such, more families will buy store-brand items, and nearly a quarter plans to reuse last year's purchases.
Retailers from Lands' End to Target are already targeting bargain-hungry shoppers with back-to-school deals. According to Experian Marketing Services, Web searches for back-to-school usually begin to spike in July, but have been moving slightly earlier. They typically peak in August.
"We expect parents to continue to use caution, but also make smart decisions for their family budget that is a good balance between what their children want and what they actually need," Shay said.
—By CNBC's Krystina Gustafson