Time to Give Back to Mom

During the recession, mothers were the first to cut back their spending, but now that consumers are feeling more upbeat, it's time to give back.

Tiffany Notes Mom disc charm and chain
Photo: tiffany.com
Tiffany Notes Mom disc charm and chain

Several surveys are projecting that spending for Mother's Day gifts will be higher this year.

Datatracker IBISWorld estimates the value of Mother's Day purchases will rise 3.7 percent this year, with big increases in the amount spent on flowers, jewelry and electronics.

The retail industry's trade group, the National Retail Federation, also is anticipating higher spending, with a forecast that calls for the average person celebrating to spend about $140.73 on gifts, up from $126.90.

The NRF also anticipates higher spending on electronics, with about 13.3 percent of celebrants purchasing electronics, up from about 9 percent of shoppers last year.

This speaks to the popularity of smartphones and tablet computers as well as cameras, e-readers, and other gadgets. Also, as these devices become easier to use more consumers—even those grandmothers out there—are looking to get their hands on them.

On average, those shopping for electronics will spend about $94.91, up from $87.70 last year, according to the NRF's survey, which was conducted by BIGresearch.

Still, jewelry and flowers remain go-to presents for Mom, and both are expected to see higher levels of spending.

"Jewelry sales have already begun to rebound and special holidays like Mother's Day give these companies an additional boost in sales," said IBISWorld retail analyst Nikoleta Panteva.

Panteva noted that even luxury retailers like Tiffany are tailoring their offerings to cater to the Mother's Day gift shopper. Their home page shows shoppers a number of items that are suitable for Mother's Day, and they are offering free Mother's Day shipping on purchases above $150.

IBISWorld projects spending on jewelry for Mother's Day will rise 6 percent to $2.61 billion, while spending on flowers is projected to rise 8 percent to $2.36 billion. They forecast a 7.4 percent gain in electronics spending, which pushes that category to $2.33 billion.

Still, despite this increase, shoppers are still looking for the right prices and are very deal-focused.

Source: FTD

Panteva notes that several of the Tiffany Mother's Day offerings are priced at about $100 or less. This makes Tiffany's appealing to both affluent, luxury consumers, who are drawn to the Tiffany brand, as well as aspirational consumers, who have less wealth but a taste for luxury goods.

The aspirational consumer is back and is helping to drive the economic recovery, Panteva said.

The NRF also expects consumers will be willing to spend.

"As we've seen throughout the year, Americans will find ways to save money while at the same time splurging on the perfect gift for all the moms in their lives," said Phil Rist, executive vice president of BIGresearch.

Citigroup also asked about Mother's Day spending in a broader survey they conducted on consumer attitudes, and their results were consistent with the other two surveys.

Consumers are expected to spend more on Mother's Day, or about $122 each, than on Valentine's Day ($68) or Father's Day ($88), according to Citi.

Interestingly, sons plan to spend more on their mother's than daughters, and sons are also more likely to send flowers to their mother, according to the City survey.

These respondents also backed the idea that Mom holds the key to a family's purse strings. About half said their mother was better at getting a bargain, while 20 percent said their father was. And about 45 percent say their mother was better at managing the family budget.

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