How E-Commerce Retailers can Prepare for Moms, Dads, and Grad’s Season

With springtime comes key dates for brands and sellers, including Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and students graduating from high schools and universities. These seasonal celebrations provide the opportunity to solve shoppers’ problems and highlight unique offers as they search for the perfect gift. 

Shoppers are projected to spend $33.5 billion for Mother’s Day in 2024, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF). This represents a 6.2% decrease from 2023, with record of $35.7 billion. U.S. adults are expected to spend an average of $254 each, with the biggest spenders being people between the ages of 35 and 44, setting aside almost $350 for the occasion.  

While more shoppers will focus on finding items that are unique or create a special memory, NRF estimates that the most popular gifts for mothers will be flowers, greeting cards, and special outings, such as lunch or dinner. However, in terms of the amount spent, the top three categories will be: 

  • Jewelry ($7 billion) 
  • Special outings ($5.9 billion) 
  • Electronics (3.5 billion) 

For Father’s Day, people spent almost $23 billion in 2023, according to NRF. That’s a 12.7% increase from the previous year. Average spending per person reached nearly $200, the highest mark of the last ten years, with the biggest spenders also aged 35-44, who outspent other consumers by almost $100.  

The most popular categories for purchased presents were clothing, special outings, and gift cards. Regarding shopping destinations, online shopping came out with 43% of buyer intentions.  

The intent to purchase gifts for high school and college graduation increased during the 2023 graduation season, reaching its highest level since 2017. Nonetheless, expected spending per person was the least among the three special occasions, averaging at just over $116. Regarding what people are most likely to gift, cash remains the top choice, followed by gift cards, apparel, and electronics.  

Crafting customer-centric strategies 

One way to stand out in a competitive space is through customer-centric storytelling. Shoppers want to find a brand or a product that helps them make an emotional connection with their loved ones. Build messaging that speaks to real-life experiences, such as how a product helps enhance a student's life during finals week or helps a busy parent relax.  

Another way of creating customer-centric storytelling is by leveraging user-generated content. According to Hootsuite, no other type of content is more authentic than user-generated content—86% of shoppers are more likely to trust brands that share this type of content. Therefore, encourage your audience to share their stories, reviews, photos, or videos related to your products or services.  

Finally, be inclusive in your messaging, keeping in mind those who have passed away and those who have complicated relationships with their parents. Although many mothers and fathers may not be physically present, some people still want to celebrate them.  

Guiding indecisive shoppers 

Although many shoppers want to find the ideal gift, the process often demands considerable effort, resulting in indecision. One strategy is creating a curated gift guide with a dedicated landing page. This list of relevant options helps indecisive shoppers find unique gift ideas and presents an opportunity to direct shoppers to the most relevant products. This ensures relevance when using ads to drive traffic to this page, enhancing a brand’s customer experience.  

Another way to solve indecisiveness is to offer gift cards. Gift cards provide several options for multiple budgets while giving the recipient the freedom to buy whatever they want. Additionally, electronic gift cards can be delivered instantly, making them a great last-minute option. 

Executing an omnichannel strategy 

Whether browsing gifts via Amazon’s mobile app, comparing prices through Walmart’s website, or scrolling through deals on Instacart, every brand interaction along the path to purchase plays a vital role in a shopper’s decision to buy.  

Brands that understand shopper behaviors can create an omnichannel marketing strategy to ensure that their marketing tactics effectively engage high-intent shoppers across different channels as they progress toward making a purchase. 

Social channels, for example, influence almost every part of the purchase funnel. According to a Bazaarvoice report, 58% of American shoppers discover products through social platforms while 50% use social media channels to research an item. Regarding what content shoppers want to see, the same report showed that they primarily seek practical knowledge to inform their purchases.   

Email is another effective channel for reaching your audience with targeted messaging, as most people who subscribe to your email list are looking for relevant guidance and information about your products. Offer a personalized experience for this audience and cater to their interests.  

Additionally, Statista reported that approximately 52% of companies observed an increase in their email marketing campaigns' return on investment (ROI) rates in 2023. Customers may receive emails shortly after making a purchase offering a coupon, complimentary item, or promotion, creating an incentive to revisit the store. 

For Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, brands should also consider pet parents, as many shoppers consider their pets family members. For graduation gifts, consider tailoring your strategy to both the gift giver and recipient, as many graduates request a specific gift.  

Solutions for boosting efficiency and growth 

Optimizing campaigns based on seasonality and shopper behaviors is a continuous activity. Manually executing this process is time intensive, especially for brands and sellers managing multiple responsibilities. With a powerful combination of human expertise and advanced AI, Quartile delivers smart strategies tailored to each seller, saving them valuable time. The following capabilities boost efficiency and drive sustainable growth: 

Expert guidance: Receive personalized guidance and support at every step from a dedicated team of experts—regardless of your budget or channel.  

Data-driven insights: Quartile uses prebuilt queries and visualizations to quickly generate insights from Amazon Marketing Cloud (AMC). This helps sellers avoid the tedious process of manually extracting data. 

Cross-channel reporting: The Quartile platform empowers sellers to integrate reporting across marketplaces and channels. This holistic view simplifies reporting and enables sellers to understand the overall impact of their campaigns.