Families Spending More Than Ever on Mom, According to NRF Survey

WASHINGTON April 27, 2015 – Families this year are ready to splurge on jewelry, flowers, gift cards, brunch, and apparel for dear old mom. According to NRF’s 2015 Mother’s Day Spending Survey conducted by Prosper Insights & Analytics, Americans will spend an average of $172.63 on mom this year, up nearly $10 from $162.94 last year and the highest amount in the survey’s 12-year history. Total spending is expected to reach $21.2 billion.*

“We’re encouraged by the positive shift we’ve seen in spending on discretionary and gift items from consumers so far this year, certainly boding well for retailers across all spectrums who are planning to promote Mother’s Day specials, including home improvement, jewelry, apparel and other specialty retailers as well as restaurants,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. 

2014 Mother's Day spending

After splurging on tablets and smartphones, beauty supplies, apparel and jewelry for mom in 2013, consumers kept practicality in mind for their Mother's Day spending in 2014. According to NRF’s 2014 Mother’s Day Spending Survey conducted by Prosper Insights & Analytics, Americans estimated they would spend an average $162.94 on gifs, down from the previous survey high of $168.94 in 2013. Total spending was expected to reach $19.9 billion.

2013 Mother's Day spending

According to NRF’s 2013 Mother’s Day spending survey conducted by Prosper Insights & Analytics, consumers said they would spend an average $168.94 on mom - up 11 percent from 2012's estimate of $152.52. Total spending was expected to reach $20.7 billion. NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay noted, “It’s clear that Americans want to honor the woman with the hardest job in the world with unique and special gifts...After a long winter that kept many from splurging on any new spring merchandise, retailers are looking forward to opening their doors and surprising shoppers with promotions that are perfect for any gardener, host, fashionista or tech-savvy mom.”  

"We’re encouraged by the positive shift we’ve seen in spending on discretionary and gift items from consumers so far this year, certainly boding well for retailers."

Matthew Shay

When it comes to gifts, the majority of consumers will pick up a greeting card for mom (80%), spending more than $786 million, and more than two-thirds (67.2%) of those celebrating will buy flowers, to the tune of $2.4 billion. Shoppers also plan on gifting apparel and clothing items (35.8%), spending more than $1.9 billion, up from $1.7 billion last year.

Families will also surprise mom with a special brunch or activity ($3.8 billion), electronic items like a new smartphone or e-reader ($1.8 billion), personal services such as a spa day ($1.5 billion), housewares or gardening tools ($890 million) and books and CDs ($480 million).  

Looking for a ‘wow’ from mom, 34.2 percent of Mother’s Day shoppers are planning to splurge on jewelry, spending a survey high of $4.3 billion for the special day, up from 31.7 percent and $3.6 billion last year.  

One in four will shop online for Mother's Day

Online shoppers plan to spend an average $252 — higher than the typical Mother's Day shopper — and more than four in 10 plan to use their smartphones to research products and compare prices. Check out Shop.org's Online Shopping Outlook for Mother's Day 2015 (PDF).

Many people know that a gift card could go a long way: Two in five (44.2%) will give mom a gift card, spending more than $2.2 billion.

“Mother’s Day is extremely unique and personal for millions of consumers, and families this year will look for different ways to enjoy their time with mom,” said Prosper’s Principal Analyst Pam Goodfellow. “While some will splurge, others will search high and low for the perfect, practical gift, knowing that she likes any gift that comes from the heart.”

Most shoppers will head to department stores (33.4%), while others will shop at specialty stores (28.2%) or discount stores (24.8%). With shoppers ready to get out of the house after a long winter, fewer shoppers will be shopping online this year (25% vs. 29% last year.)

The survey shows that 18- to 24-year-olds who own smartphones and tablets are most likely to use these devices to research products and compare prices for gifts (46%), and are most likely to use their tablets to purchase a gift (30.2%) – but this age group won’t necessarily be the biggest spenders compared to other age groups: 25- to 34-year-olds plan to spend the most on mom, at an average of $244.32; 18- to 24-year-olds will spend an average of $214.81.

The majority of shoppers plan to buy for their mother or stepmother (62.5%), while 23.2 percent will shop for their wife, 9.8 percent will shop for their daughter, 8.9 percent will shop for their sister and 7.4 percent plan to splurge on their grandmother.

About the survey
The NRF 2015 Mother’s Day Consumer Spending Survey was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to the Mother’s Day holiday. The survey was conducted for NRF by Prosper Insights & Analytics. The poll of 6,285 consumers was conducted April 1-9, 2015. The consumer poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.3 percentage points.

Prosper Insights & Analytics delivers executives timely, consumer-centric insights from multiple sources. As a comprehensive resource of information, Prosper represents the voice of the consumer and provides knowledge to marketers regarding consumer views on the economy, personal finance, retail, lifestyle, media and domestic and world issues. www.ProsperDiscovery.com

About NRF
The National Retail Federation is the world’s largest retail trade association. Based in Washington, D.C., NRF represents discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs — 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF.com