Back to School 2020: Dr.Guskey Spending Predictions 

1 min read

Despite the COVID-19 world we are living in, predictions are that back-to-school shopping will break all records with total sales over $101.6 billion according to the National Retail Federation.  Compare that to the $80 billion spent last year and we are looking at a significant increase in spending.  This is due to several factors – consumers have not been spending through the quarantine and students are anxious to get back into the classroom. 

But the coronavirus has affected how we shop – with over 43% planning to shop more online.  Although spending for clothes will be slightly down, electronics spending will be significantly higher with 63% of B2S shoppers buying laptops and computers.  Sanitizer in decorated bottles and personalized masks are all the rage along with noise cancelling headphones.  

Much of the fun of B2S shopping is gone since fewer parents are taking their kids with them.  Although parents can be more efficient in shopping and are keeping their children safe, be aware that many stores throw away returns or donate them – so be kind to retailers and mindful of the purchases you are making to limit your returns as retailers are taking a huge hit. 

Speaking of retailers, shoppers are visiting fewer brick and mortar stores and are doing a lot of their comparison shopping online.  Elementary through high school spending is expected to be on average $789 per family while college shopping will be $1060.

Tips to parents for Back to School Success: 

  • Do your homework. Have a budget and stick to it. 
  • Wait to shop. No one knows what this school year will look like, so spend some money now and save more for spending after school has already begun. 
  • Whether your child will be in the classroom, learning at home, or participating in some hybrid model, try to have some kind of normalcy for your students including a regular daily schedule and a space to do homework.
  • Shop thrift stores for clothes and dollar stores for supplies. If kids won’t be physically in the classroom, their school clothes may not have to be new and trendy. 

God bless the students and teachers as we enter into a new school year!

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