Verdict: Halloween retail spending to reach £472 million

Halloween (October 31) has established itself as a key occasion in the retail calendar, with 29% of UK consumers planning to buy related goods, according to a Verdict survey.

Women more likely to make a purchase, but males spend considerably more. Over a third of females intend to spend on retail for Halloween, with 36% planning to make a purchase, compared with just 23% of males. However, men like to splash more cash, as they plan to spend £48 on Halloween, £20 more than females.

UK consumers with children are twice as likely to buy on Halloween, with 44% spending on retail goods for the occasion, compared to just 19% of UK shoppers without children. There is, however, little difference in spend, with parents spending £39, and those without children spending just £6 less.

Fancy dress and costumes are the most popular purchases, with 55% spending on clothing – though this rises to 62% among female Halloween shoppers, and 63% among Halloween shoppers with children.

A total of 52% of Halloween shoppers plan to be prepared for trick or treaters by spending on celebratory food & drink, rising to 59% for Halloween shoppers without children.

Verdict predicts grocers and discounters will be the big winners this year over Halloween, with 30% of Halloween shoppers planning to spend in Asda, and 25% intending to buy goods at Tesco. With the one-off nature of the event, Verdict estimates that pound shops will also be busy in the run-up to October 31, with 28% of shoppers planning to visit 99p Stores, and 20% visiting Poundland.

Greg Bromley, senior analyst at Verdict Retail, commented: “Wider growing consumer uncertainty and the possibility of price rises in the shops, paired with the event falling on a Monday this year–compared to a Saturday last year – will all affect total retail spending on Halloween.

“In spite of this, we expect spending on Halloween to increase by 2.6% to reach £472m – a sound increase, but a slower level of growth than we have witnessed in the past few years.

“To win the greatest share of consumer spend, participating retailers must look to offer sharp prices on the ‘Halloween essentials’; such as pumpkins, decorations for the home, and fancy dress, while offering immersive and engaging visual merchandising to drive interest and footfall to stores”.

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