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Three ways younger consumers are embracing Easter

This article first appeared on the National Retail Federation website.

It’s the only time of year to put all your eggs in one basket, and consumers are gearing up for the Easter holiday. Even consumers who don’t plan to celebrate the holiday find the seasonal sales and goodies hard to resist: About half (48%) of those not celebrating still plan to take advantage of Easter-related sales to pick up items.

Those under age 35 really embrace every aspect of the holiday, from the traditional to the whimsical. These younger consumers are even more likely than the average adult to say they plan on celebrating Easter and are the only age group that’s seen a consistent increase in those celebrating compared with a decade ago.

What’s engaging younger consumers

How are consumers planning to mark the occasion? Regardless of age, the most popular activities are those traditionally associated with the holiday — visiting with family, cooking a holiday meal or attending a church service. In some “eggcellent” news for those who want a festive meal without the fuss: Williams-Sonoma is filling baskets this year by selling a full Easter dinner.

Younger consumers might be a bit more playful with their plans: Compared with the average person celebrating Easter, those under 35 are significantly more likely to say they will plan an Easter egg hunt, open gifts, browse online or shop over the holiday.

What’s inspiring younger consumers

The broader interest in Easter-related activities might also spur more spending. These same younger consumers are also significantly more likely than other older generations to say they plan on spending more this year compared with last. This has grown over time: 10 years ago, just 12% of those under age 35 said they planned to increase their Easter spending. Today, it’s more than doubled.

What’s inspiring these consumers to fill Easter baskets differs from their older counterparts as well. Those under the age of 35 are more likely to be inspired by store displays, sales and exclusive or seasonal products. Almost half of the youngest consumers in this age group (18- to 24-year-olds) consider it a social activity with their loved ones. That’s compared with roughly a third or less of older consumers.

Younger consumers are relying on mobile for Easter purchases

Those under 35 are also more inclined than ever to hop on their smartphones to assist in Easter shopping. In 2015, only 63% planned to use their smartphones to help with purchasing decisions around the holiday; that’s jumped to 74%, significantly higher than older age groups.

Making a purchase on a smartphone is the action that’s seen the greatest increase since 2015 for this age group. Back then, less than a quarter were doing so, while now over a third (37%) are planning to.

That’s great news for retailers, as they’re planning to focus investments on mobile this year. According to NRF and Forrester’s recently released State of Retailing Online Report, nearly half (49%) of surveyed retailers plan on allocating additional marketing spend on smartphones.

No matter the age or plans of those celebrating Easter, there are plenty of strategies retailers can employ to best reach and engage these consumers are they prepare for the holiday.

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