Halloween sales could be scary good for retailers
Two-thirds of parents with a child under 18 plan to do more for Halloween this year compared to other years, according to a survey from Hershey.
The survey of about 2,000 U.S. adults by The Harris Poll taken in early August further found 86 percent of Americans between the ages of 35 and 44 and 66 percent of those between 18 and 34 are either more or as excited about Halloween this year than in previous years.
Retail’s second-biggest spending holiday is expected by many to bounce back this year due to climbing vaccination rates driven by fears about the spread of the Delta variant, fewer social gathering restrictions and pent-up demand. The National Retail Federation estimated Halloween spending reached $8.05 billion in 2020, down 8.3 percent from 2019 due to lower participation.
Ted Decker, Home Depot president and COO, said on the company’s quarterly call that an early online release of Halloween products quickly sold out. “That’s a very strong indication that people are still going to engage in decorating,” he said.
Spirit Halloween in mid-July said it was looking to hire 35,000 employees as it opens 1,425 stores this year, up from 1,400 last year. “Our associates’ passion and dedication are what got us through the most challenging year in recent history and we are looking for team members to join us in celebrating what we anticipate to be the spookiest Halloween ever,” Steven Silverstein, CEO, said in a statement.
Party City plans to open 80 to 100 Halloween City stores this year, up from 25 in 2020 but well below the 250 that opened in 2019. On its second-quarter call, CEO Brad Weston said Party City is “well-positioned for the upcoming Halloween season” but prepared to make adjustments. “We’re ready for any level of demand as we are sort of still in a volatile and dynamic time,” he said.
Susan Dobscha, a marketing professor at Bentley University in Massachusetts, feels social gathering phobia will hold back Halloween participation. She told the Los Angeles Times, “We have to adjust to the new normal. I think there will still be a lot of hesitancy to go back to big crowds.”
- Highly Valued Loot: Consumers are ready for Halloween—and so are we – Hershey
- Hershey survey finds increased interest in Halloween this year – Bakedmag
- Hershey’s has filled the Halloween candy cauldron with all your favorites – Foodsided
- Consumers Anticipate New Ways to Celebrate Halloween, Despite COVID-19 – National Retail Federation
- Home Depot (HD) Q2 2021 Earnings Call Transcript – The Motley Fool
- The Spookiest Halloween Season Ever Means Big Job Opportunities at Spirit Halloween – Spirit Halloween/PRNewswire
- Delta variant haunts Halloween plans – Los Angeles Times
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Will Halloween spending recover strongly or face another challenging year? What factors will boost and restrain spending? How should retailers prepare, considering the uncertainty?