Spending will increase for Back to School needs in 2015: The annual Back to School Shopping Survey from FatWallet asked American parents what’s #1 on their shopping lists, their kids shopping lists, how much they’ll be spending this year and where they plan to shop during Back to school sales. Parents also shared opinions on when they thought students should have their own laptops, tablets and smartphones and when to find the best deals.
Back to School Laptop Deals Get A+
In a complete change from last year’s survey, parents rank back to school sales as the best time to find deals on laptops and tablets, over Black Friday deals and Cyber Monday deals.
The experts here at FatWallet would tend to agree with them–while holiday offers some tantalizing price drops on select older tech products with some laptops sinking to the $200, July and August tend to bring sales on higher quality laptops and desktops offering as much as $500 off. Parents overwhelmingly agree that laptops are the best suited computer device to help students learn and succeed.
Full Survey Results (*TNS Global):
9 in 10 parents will spend the same or more this year on back to school.
Q: How much do you plan to spend on school related supplies and products this year?
- 27% – More than last year
- 62% – Same as last year
- 11% – Less than last year
8 in 10 parents will buy new apparel for their children this year for school.
Q: Which back to school shopping items are you planning to purchase this year?
- 20% – Laptop, tablet or computer
- 77% – School Supplies
- 80% – Clothes and shoes
- 15% – Smartphone/Cell Phone
- 41% – Textbooks
Note: Last year, supplies slightly outranked clothing and shoes, while this year the need for laptops has risen 33%.
Mobile shopping on the rise for back to school, up 700% from 2014.
Q: How do you plan to shop for school related supplies and products this year?
- 37% – Online Retailer Sites
- 16% – Online Coupons/Cash Back Sites
- 7% – Mobile Shopping App (only 1% in 2014)
- 91% – In Store
Swag still rules the the school for students of these parents.
Q: Which of the following items do you think kids “want” most for starting school this year?
- 13% – Laptop
- 9% – Tablet
- 16% – Smartphone
- 13% – School Supplies
- 41% – Clothes and Shoes
Note: According to parents, more kids want laptops than last year, up nearly 100% (7% in 2014).
Nike is front-runner for brands parents say kids ask for the most for school.
Q: Which brands do kids ask for the most for school?
- 41% – Nike
- 31% – Apple
- 22% – Under Armour
- 19% – American Eagle
- 18% – Levi’s
- 17% – Converse
- 16% – Forever 21
- 15% – Samsung
- 12% – Adidas
- 6% – Pacsun
Note: Parents think kids want Apple brands twice as much as they want Samsung.
7 in 10 parents say students need their own laptops and tablets for school..
Q: As a parent, what age group does it become more helpful for students to have their own laptop or tablet?
- 5% Grade School (K-5)
- 27% Middle School (6-8)
- 47% High School (9-12)
- 20% College
- 1% Wait to buy their own
2/3 of parents say laptops are best suited to help students learn.
Q: Which product is better suited to help most students with their school work?
- 65% – Laptop
- 14% – Tablet
- 12% – Desktop Computer
- 2% – Smartphone
Back to School sales grade higher than Black Friday for laptop and tablet deals.
Q: Which sales event is most likely to have the best deals on a new Laptop or Tablet for a student?
- 37% – Back to School Sales
- 31% – Black Friday Sales
- 10% – Cyber Monday Sales
- 4% – December Holiday Sales
- 6% – After Holiday (or New Years) Sales
Note: 13% offered that other sales have better deals than the bigger holiday sales events.
2/3 OF PARENTS SAY IT’S PRACTICAL FOR TEENS TO HAVE A SMARTPHONE
Q: As a parent, what age group does it become practical for students to have a Smartphone?
- 3% – Elementary (9 or younger)
- 16% – Pre Teen (10 -12)
- 38% – Early Teen (13-15)
- 34% – Late Teen (16-18)
Note: Only 7% said students should wait and buy their own smartphones, down form 16% in 2014.
Note: *The national survey conducted online by TNS on behalf of FatWallet.com in June 2015 was fielded among 1,000 adults ages 18 or older, 50/50 male/female.