Love is in the air and consumers are spending big to show it this Valentine’s Day. Total spending is expected to hit $25.9 billion — the second-highest year on record — and per-person spending is expected to come in around $193, according to NRF and Prosper Insights and Analytics’ annual Valentine’s Day survey. Read on to learn more about three key Valentine’s Day shopping trends and how consumers are sharing the love this year.
Celebrating all their loved ones
Valentine's Day spending
Learn more about Valentine's Day shopping in 2023.
Consumers still plan to spend the most on those closest to them. But in a return to pre-pandemic behavior, they also want to recognize the other relationships in their lives. Although Valentine’s Day plans for significant others and family members look much the same this year as last year, more consumers than ever are celebrating friends, co-workers, pets, classmates and teachers. Total spending on gifts for these groups is expected to reach $7.1 billion, up from $5.2 billion last year and comparable to $7.6 billion in 2020.
With a return to in-person working, learning and socializing, it makes sense that more consumers want to show their appreciation for their friends, co-workers, classmates and teachers. And it’s not just humans that are getting the love — a record 32% plan to purchase a Valentine’s Day gift for their pets this year.
Finding the perfect gift
Although online is still the most popular shopping destination for Valentine’s Day, consumers are heading back in-store to find gifts that say “I love you.” The number of people saying they’re planning to shop at discount stores and department stores is gaining on those saying they plan to shop online, and it’s no surprise given all these stores have to offer.
There’s a lot of social media buzz around discount stores as value-driven TikTok users are hyping up Five Below and TJ Maxx as some of their favorite places to find Valentine’s décor, accessories and gifts. Meanwhile, department stores like Macy’s, J.C. Penney and Kohl’s have gift guides for consumers no matter their budgets.
Giving the gift of experience
Ever since NRF started tracking gifts of experience, those saying they’d “love to receive a gift of experience” has been higher than those saying they were “planning to give a gift of experience.” It looks like gift-givers are finally starting to get the memo — almost one-third of consumers plan to give a gift of experience this year.
If you’re part of the 6% who are new to giving gifts of experience this year, retailers have you covered! Check to see if your valentine’s favorite store offers workshops — Michaels, Sephora and The Sill all offer in-store classes. If your valentine is a homebody, Uncommon Goods has over 100 classes they can enjoy from the comfort of home.
To learn more about how consumers are celebrating their loved ones this year, visit NRF’s Valentine’s Day headquarters.