Outlooks—and spending—trend upward as schools reopen
After a tumultuous school year in 2020, families are approaching the 2021 back-to-school season with enthusiasm and renewed confidence. Sales are projected to surpass recent records, and parents are shopping earlier—partly to avoid stock-outs—as they mix more tech in with teachers’ traditional supply lists and do more of their shopping online.
Schools open; wallets follow suit
Confidence and clarity are creating a sense of normalcy to the upcoming school year. As parents look to replenish items, back-to-school spending is projected to rise 16% YoY.
In today’s backpack, tech takes over
Digital learning tools are replacing traditional school supplies, driving tech sales up 37% YoY. Even as schools open, more than half of respondents plan to spend on online resources.
Shopping moves up the calendar
Far more families plan to wrap up shopping by the end of July, in part because they expect lingering COVID-19 disruptions to keep some key items off the shelves.
A tale of diverging formats
For school-related tech products, online retailers are the preferred destination. For traditional back-to-school products, mass merchants still lead while dollar stores gain ground.
RWD practice leader
Risk & Financial Advisory
Even if students are fully in the classroom, a lot of them are used to a more digital learning experience. That was one of the biggest changes that we saw this year in the survey, how much digital learning has propelled the technology spending this year.”