Drunk Shopping? What People Buy After They Leave the Bar

BY Courtney Huckabay
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"America’s drunk shopping habit hits $30.43 billion. Are Americans making poor decisions after drinking? Nearly half of American adults (46%) who drink alcohol regularly admit to making a purchase while under the influence — an estimated 68 million people, drawn from Finder.com's study of 2,000 American adults."

"The biggest concern? Our drunk shopping addiction may be rising, given we’re spending double the amount on last year’s purchases while under the influence! Americans have spent an estimated $30.43 billion on these spontaneous drunk purchases, or about $447.57 per person. Compare this to just $206 spent on drunk purchases last year."

This is great news for marketers and retailers! Start targeting drunk shoppers now! The newest AudienceSCAN data reports 9% of American adults visit a bar/​tavern/​pub at least three times in a typical week.

Boozing by the numbers

  • 60.27% of American adults — or an estimated 148 million of us — drink an average 7 alcoholic beverages weekly.
  • We spend $5.4 billion on alcoholic beverages a week — an average $36.56 per person.
  • The most popular alcoholic drink is beer, with 39.53% of American adults drinking an average 5 beers weekly.
  • Men are twice as likely as women to consume beer, with an estimated 53.4% of men enjoying a beer, compared with only 26.48% of women who pick up a can weekly.
  • Wine is a woman’s drink of choice, with 37.54% of women enjoying an average 2 glasses a week.
  • Millennials are twice as likely as Gen Xers and baby boomers combined to enjoy a glass of moonshine or other liquor.
  • Men are twice as likely as women to consume spirits, with an estimated 36.49% of men regularly boozing up on liquor compared with 18.43% of women.

"The Finder​.com research reveals what tipsy shoppers are most likely to spend on soaking up their alcohol: Some 60.83% of shoppers say they spend up on food. The next most common purchases are shoes and clothes (25.09%) and gambling (24.91%). Yet others admit to buying concert tickets and even prostitution under the influence."

The latest AudienceSCAN responses coincide with these findings: 27% of Frequent Bar Patrons intend to spend at least $500 on women's casual and dress shoes this year, and 23% will spend at least $500 on men's casual and dress shoes. Another 13% of bar patrons will buy adult entertainment (including erotic novelties, gentlemen's club admission/​membership).
"Gen Xers spend the most on drunk purchases, averaging $738.87 per haul — more than triple the amount ($206.11) that millennials spent. But while Gen Xers spend more, millennials are more likely to spontaneously indulge on a spree their next night out, with 61.07% of millennials who drink regularly admitting to drunk shopping. Compared that to Gen Xers at 51.17% and baby boomers at 31.29%."

"But which generation embodies the biggest drinker? On an average week, a Gen Xer spends $36.91 on alcohol, compared with $59.28 a week for millennials. That’s a whopping $1,163.24 extra that millennials spend on booze each year!"
"Surprisingly, men spend almost double that of women when under the influence, averaging a total $564.51 per spend, compared to women, who spend an average $282.65. Compounding this, men are also more likely to buy while boozed up, with 48.19% of men who drink regularly admitting to a drunken shop, compared with the 41.36% of women who do so."

Businesses can reach out to Frequent Bar Patrons in the evenings when they're leaving the bar. The most recent AudienceSCAN study found 53% of Frequent Bar Patrons took action after seeing mobile smartphone app ads or text message ads in the past month.

"On an average week, men spend an estimated $44.17 on alcohol — much higher than the average $26.77 women spend to drink. That’s an extra $904.80 that men spend on booze than women in a year!"

"Spirits and liquor appear more popular with men than women. Men are four times more likely (3.30%) to enjoy a sneaky moonshine than their female counterparts (0.68%). And it’s nearly twice as likely that men (8.45%) will consume cider than women (4.36%)."

"Married Americans spend twice as much on spontaneous drunk purchases than their divorced counterparts, with an average $327.62 spent in total compared to a divorcee’s $147.71. However, singletons are the most likely to make a purchase while drunk: 55.78% of single people admitting to making a purchase while under the influence, compared with only 43.63% of married drinkers."

AudienceSCAN data is available for your applications and dashboards through the SalesFuel API. Media companies and agencies can access AudienceSCAN data through the AudienceSCAN Reports in AdMall.