Back To School


Back-To-School Shoppers Prefer Brick-And-Mortar Stores, Study Says

July 11, 2018 - 3:34 pm

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- It might be July, but it’s not too early to think about back-to-school shopping.

Bloomberg Reporter Hema Parmar found that people still prefer getting those school supplies in person.

“It’s an interesting trend; kind of deviates from what we’ve seen across the consumer retail sector broadly – which is struggling, you know, brick and mortar stores struggling with the shift to online spending,” Parmar told WCBS 880’s Kevin Rincon.

But a survey from Deloitte indicated that shoppers are spending twice as much in stores as they do online for back-to-school shopping.

“So the average household, they’re going to fork out nearly $300 in an actual store on things like backpacks and notebooks and clothes, versus $115 per family online,” Parmar said.

Deloitte said when it comes to shopping for kids – particularly for clothes – online shopping can have some major pitfalls.

“He said, you know, when you look at shopping for kids, they grow so much from season to season, so it’s just easier for parents to go into the store with their kids, try to find the right size, versus buying online and then it not quite fitting or the kids growing out of it, and then having to go back,” Parmar said. “Also, the sizes vary brand to brand, so it can be difficult trying to order online a specific size. It’s easier just to drag the kids to the mall. So that’s part of the reason why we’re seeing more money spent in physical stores than online.”

Back-to-school shopping this year comes amid President Donald Trump’s tariffs that have sparked a trade war with China – where many school-related products are manufactured. Parmar said she has gone through a long list of consumer products that could be impacted, from handbags to electronics and air conditioners – but not so much products needed for school.

“There hasn’t been too much of a focus on specific, like, apparel for example. That’s been a bit spared. Shoes also have been spared. But again, this is a very long list, so we’re definitely going to be digging through it all,” she said.