Attention Marketers: Back to School Shopping Has Already Begun

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With some colleges just barely ending their spring semester, back to school shopping has already begun. Although the back-to-school marketing does not pick up pace until July, according to a Bizrate Insights survey earlier this month, 5% of consumers have already started shopping, and even started back in April. Seven percent plan to hit the stores for back to school products before June. Consumers are shopping more and more advance in order to save money and get the most out of back to school deals.

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Last year, consumers said they started shopping early due to the desire to save money, and this trend is continuing into this season. Sixty-nine percent of those surveyed said they plan to spend less on back to school shopping than last year, although the overall budget for households with college students is a little over $1,000.

However, 49% of those surveyed said the quality of the products they buy is more important than price. Additionally, loyalty to certain brand also affects their decisions to purchase products, according to 30% of those surveyed.

“Retailers should be ready to support shoppers across channels by the end of June,” said Hayley Silver, the VP of Bizrate Insights. “Product availability, price and coupons are important, but be sure to also include indicators of quality, such as ratings, reviews and guarantees.” According to the survey, 41% of respondents said product ratings and reviews influenced their decision to buy. The identifier of quality is important especially when shopping for back to college because parents (and students) want products that will last them the majority of their college career.

While the most popular time to shop for back to school is still predominantly in late July and early August, it is important for your brand to gear up your marketing strategy to provide the highest quality products that will get consumers raving about your brand for the months to come. For more information on how to get started on your back to school marketing strategies, contact us at OnCampus Advertising.

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