With more people celebrating, Americans will splurge on costumes, candy and pumpkins for a record $9.1 billion in Halloween spending this year, according to the annual survey released by the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics. The figure is up 8.3 percent from last year’s previous record of $8.4 billion.
“Americans are planning to spend more than ever as they gear up for Halloween,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “Retailers are helping customers celebrate in style with a huge selection of costumes, candy and decorations to cater to ghosts and goblins of all ages.”
Consumers are expected to spend an average $86.13, up from last year’s $82.93, with 179 million Americans planning to partake in Halloween festivities, up from 171 million in 2016. Only 12.9 percent say their spending will be impacted by the economy, down from 14.1 percent last year and a peak of 32.1 percent in 2011.
According to the survey, consumers plan to spend $3.4 billion on costumes (purchased by 69 percent of Halloween shoppers), $2.7 billion on candy (95 percent), another $2.7 billion on decorations (72 percent) and $410 million on greeting cards (37 percent).
And just think how much they’ll be spending on Halloween parties! The new AudieneceSCAN survey found 16% of adults will host or attend parties this year!
Among Halloween celebrants, 71 percent plan to hand out candy, 49 percent will decorate their home or yard, 48 percent will wear costumes, 46 percent will carve a pumpkin, 35 percent will throw or attend a party, 31 percent will take their children trick-or-treating, 23 percent will visit a haunted house and 16 percent will dress pets in costumes.
Thirty-five percent of consumers will find their inspiration for the perfect costume online, while 30 percent will look in stores, 20 percent will ask friends and family, 18 percent will look to Facebook or Pinterest, 17 percent will be influenced by pop culture and 14 percent by print media.
Brick-and-mortar retailers need be all over the web with Halloween promos, party ideas and merchandise offerings. The AudienceSCAN survey showed 35.6% of Party Hosts took action based on sponsored search results (like on Google, Yahoo or Bing) in the past 30 days.
When it comes to buying costumes and other Halloween supplies, 47 percent of shoppers will visit discount stores and 38 percent will go to a specialty Halloween store or costume store. In addition, 25 percent will visit supermarkets, 24 percent will buy at department stores and 22 percent will shop online.
Some might just blow it out big, too. The new AudienceSCAN survey results revealed 5.4% of Party Hosts plan to rent party supplies this year.
“Halloween continues to be a highly anticipated holiday for Americans, who will spend a record amount this year with increases across all purchasing categories,” Prosper Insights Principal Analyst Pam Goodfellow said. “Expect consumers to be on the lookout for early-bird promotions both online and in-store as they hunt for the best items to complete their costumes and embellish their homes.”
More than 3.7 million children plan to dress as their favorite action character or superhero, 2.9 million as Batman characters and another 2.9 million as their favorite princess while 2.2 million will dress as a cat, dog, monkey or other animal.
Party Hosts might be planning family-themed costumes this year, so ad campaigns could promote costume packages. The new AudienceSCAN study showed Party Hosts are 18% more likely than average to have kids aged 2 to 5, and 16% have children ages 6 to 9 to dress up this year.
Proving that Halloween isn’t just for kids, a record number of adults (48 percent) plan to dress in costume this year. More than 5.8 million adults plan to dress like a witch, 3.2 million as their favorite Batman character, 3 million as an animal (cat, dog, cow, etc.), and 2.8 million as a pirate.
Pet stores should keep in mind that 47% of Party Hosts own dogs and 31% have cats to dress up, according to AudieneceSCAN data.
Pets won’t be left behind when it comes to dressing up for Halloween. Ten percent of pet lovers will dress their animal in a pumpkin costume, while 7 percent will dress their cat or dog as a hot dog and 4 percent as a dog, lion or pirate.