Easter Gatherings up 52% – COVID Rebound Tempered by Inflation & Product Shortage Concerns, Numerator Reports
Travel Returns to Pre-Pandemic Levels; Alcohol and Toys Equally Likely to Make This Year’s Easter Basket
Numerator, a data and tech company serving the market research space, has published findings from an Easter 2022 consumer sentiment study to understand consumer celebration and shopping intentions, as well as inflation and COVID-19 impacts on the Easter holiday. This Easter will be the first major holiday since the onset of the pandemic where over half of consumers (61%) do not expect COVID-19 to impact their celebrations, but inflation and product shortage concerns remain high, with 75% of consumers reporting concern for each. While food and candy top the list of planned Easter purchases, nearly the same number of consumers plan to buy alcohol (25%) as those who plan to buy toys or games (27%).
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Key findings include:
- Easter is a widespread holiday that over-indexes with older generations and Northeastern consumers. More than 4 in 5 consumers (84%) expect to celebrate Easter this year, with Boomers+ and Northeastern consumers even more likely to celebrate (88% and 90%, respectively).
- Family gatherings are returning as COVID concerns subside. Among those who intend to celebrate, nearly two-thirds (64%) say they will gather with family and friends, a significant 22-point increase from the 42% who said the same in 2021.
- Easter travel is back to pre-pandemic levels. More than 1 in 10 consumers (11%) say they will travel for Easter 2022, up from 2% of consumers for Easter 2021 and surpassing pre-COVID norms (10%).
- In addition to gatherings and travel, 42% of consumers plan to cook or bake for Easter, 31% will attend a religious service, 26% will decorate their homes or give gifts, 19% will attend a party or grill out, and 11% plan to dine out.
- Nearly all Easter celebrators plan to make purchases for the holiday. 97% of consumers say they will make an Easter purchase, including food (76% of consumers), candy (68%), gifts (34%), toys/games (27%), decorations (27%), alcoholic beverages (25%), apparel (16%), and party supplies (14%).
- Reese’s is the top candy brand choice among Easter buyers. More than two-thirds (68%) plan to buy Reese’s this year, followed by M&M’s (57%), Hershey’s (56%), Peeps (44%), and Cadbury (42%). More than half (55%) of Easter candy shoppers plan to buy at least one brand of jelly beans.
- Consumers continue their return to in-store shopping, with Mass and Grocery poised to win Easter 2022. Nearly 9 in 10 consumers (88%) say they will shop in-store for Easter 2022, and 32% expect to make at least one purchase online. With 61% of consumers planning to shop at Mass (Big Box) retailers and 60% at Grocery stores, these two channels are poised to capture the majority of Easter 2022 spend.
- Amazon is the online retailer of choice for Easter. Nearly a quarter (22%) of consumers plan to buy on Amazon.com, compared to Walmart.com (16%) and Target.com (12%).
- Brands can capture almost half of Easter spend in the week leading up to Easter. Nearly one-third (32%) of Easter shoppers plan to shop one week in advance, 10% plan to shop 1-2 days in advance, and 1% plan to shop on Easter itself.
- Inflation is top of mind for the majority of Easter shoppers and more pronounced for those with financial hardships. Three-quarters (75%) of consumers expect inflation to impact their Easter shopping, with 18% expecting a significant impact. Among consumers who reported a worsening financial situation in 2022, 33% expect a significant inflation impact – 15 points higher than the average Easter shopper.
- Consumers will make tradeoffs and shift shopping habits in response to rising prices. Nearly half (48%) say they will search for promotions and coupons, 41% will reduce the number of items they purchase, 34% will switch to lower priced brands, 31% will shop earlier than usual to find better bargains, 30% will shop at multiple retailers to find the best deals, and 30% will research prices prior to shopping. Fewer than one in 10 (7%) say inflation will not affect their shopping.
- Consumers are bracing for supply chain disruptions. Three-quarters (75%) of consumers say they are expecting Easter product shortages with 10% expecting the impact to be significant.
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