Digital Marketing Researches & Reports

2018 Back-to-School Survey: US Consumers | Deloitte

Shopping Seasons | USA

In 2017, the number of households with school going (K-12 grades) children in the US reached 29 million with 54 million children. This great segment grabs the retailers’ attention, especially during the back-to-school season. In 2018, the total back-to-school spending is expected to reach ~$27.6B, or $510 per household.

Read the below points and cast a quick glance at shopping trends for the 2018 back-to-school season in the US:

Consumer Spending on Back-to-School Trends

  • Clothing & accessories (98%) and school supplies (98%) are the most planned to be purchased for back-to-school season.
  • Although only 23% of back-to-school shoppers plan to buy computers & hardware, this category will grab an average spend of $299 which is more than any other category.
  • In-store is the most preferred channel during the back-to-school shopping season with a rate of 57%, followed far by online channels with only 23%.
  • Computers & hardware are more likely to be bought online with a rate of 40 %, while school supplies and clothing/accessories are more likely to be bought from stores with a rate of 60% for both of them.

Back-to-School Season Timing and Shopping Behavior

  • 54% of back-to-school shoppers are expected to be active during the last two weeks of July, while 67% will be active during the first two weeks of August.
  • Parents who begin their B2S shopping before August are likely to spend 20% more than late starters.
  • Desktop/laptop devices are the most preferred devices for almost half of back-to-school shoppers, while mobile is the most preferred one for 53% of B2S shoppers.
  • 23% of B2S shoppers in the US use social media during the B2S shopping season, 63% of them use it to find promotions and 59% use if to receive a coupon.
  • In terms of payment methods for back-to-school shopping in the US, 57% plan to pay with their debit cards, 44% will use credit cards and 37% will use cash/check.
2018 Back-to-School Survey: US Consumers | Deloitte 1 | Digital Marketing Community

A Graph Shows the Planned Back to School Spend for 2018 (By Category)


Data is driven from 1,200 parents of school-aged children. All respondents had at least one child attending school in grades K – 12 this fall. The survey was conducted online using between May 31 and June 6, 2018. The margin of error for the entire sample of plus or minus three percentage points.


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