How Back-To-School Retail Vibes Could Reach $41.5 Billion

By CultureBanx Team

  • Back-to-school spending is expected to increase to $41.5B for K-12 students
  • Parents plan to spend an average of $890 per child as tech gear takes over

Getting your kids ready to take on a new school year won’t be cheap as shoppers plan to spend more on back-to-school gear this year. Despite an unpredictable back-to-school environment, overall spending is expected to increase to $41.5 billion for K-12 students, according to the National Retail Federation. Parents plan to spend an average of $890 per child, as tech gear takes over back-to-school spending.

Why This Matters: Remote learning had catalyzed sales growth in electronics. The survey found that total spending on electronics is expected to reach a record-setting $15.2 billion this year, with purchases of laptops, tablets and calculators toping the category for the K-12 segment. Last year, back-to-school spending was $529 per household, which was flat compared to 2019. At that time, shoppers were concerned about their safety due to COVID-19 and weren’t sure whether retailers would offer reasonable prices.

Compared to last year, 69% of back-to-school shoppers plan to buy electronics or other computer-related accessories. A snapshot of the report on school-focused retail found that parents plan to spend 15.7% more this year than last year.

For the college segment, spending on big-ticket items such as electronics and furnishings, along with necessities like food are expected to represent more than half of the increase in total back-to-college spending this year. College students and their families expect to spend $1,366 per person.

Situational Awareness: The slightly increased back-to-school budget seems to mirror the economic situation consumers have. Deloitte’s survey found that nearly 70% of parents plan to spend the same or less than last year. Families with students in kindergarten through 12th grade will spend 10% less on back-to-school items this season, according to Deloitte.

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