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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : June 27, 2011

Consumers delay back-to-school spending, banking on last-minute offers

Many consumers intend to do their back-to-school shopping even later this year than they did in 2010. Why? They're hoping to take advantage of last-minute deals online, according to shopping website PriceGrabber.

by Helen Leggatt

pricegrabber logo.jpgIn 2010 just over a third of shoppers said they were leaving their back-to-school purchases until the last minute, but this year that number is nearer to half (49%), according to PriceGrabber's latest findings.

Few plan to get their back-to-school shopping out of the way and completed early - just 14% said they will begin shopping this month (June) versus 26% who planned to do so last year.

The reason for the late shopping dates is, says PriceGrabber, because consumers want to take their time researching planned purchases. In addition, many are holding out on spending early in the hope they can take advantage of last-minute offers and deals to make their budgets work harder and smarter.

Talking of budgets, financial concerns still dog consumers and few (13%) plan to spend more this year on back-to-school items than in 2010. Around half (52%) plan to spend the same as last year but just over a third (35%) intend to spend less.

"As consumers become increasingly accustomed to a frugal standard of living, they also become more creative in how they save," said Graham Jones, general manager of PriceGrabber.

"We are seeing more shoppers engage with the new technologies that are changing the retail landscape by comparing prices online and watching for price drops."

Tags: back-to-school, consumer insight, consumer spending, online shopping, research, trends

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