UK consumers are set to spend over £1bn on Valentine’s Day, says GlobalData

This year Valentine’s Day is predicted to be worth just over £1bn, up 0.7% on 2018, as shoppers spend on the romantic occasion despite disposable incomes remaining squeezed, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

Buying food and drink to have at home remains the greatest opportunity for retailers to entice shoppers to spend on this occasion, with many consumers opting to make a romantic meal at home rather than indulge on what can be an expensive takeaway or often, busy dining-out experience. Retailers that capitalise on this trend with recipe ideas and a focus on premium ranges could win big during the Valentine’s Day event.

Zoe Mills, Retail Analyst at GlobalData commented: “Consumers want to participate in this event, however, for many, spending on dining out and a lavish gift is not affordable. This is a positive result for retailers who may be seeing a lull in footfall after the busy Christmas peak. The focus on product quality among the discounters is forecast to hinder growth in the food & drink market as shoppers trade down, however growth in this category remains robust at 1.3% in 2019, compared to +1.5% in 2018.”

While gifts remain the largest category in the Valentine’s Day market, forecast to grow 0.5% in 2019, uplift in spend in this area is driven by food & drink gifts, with these items being more affordable than accessories such as leather goods, which are forecast to see a decline in popularity in 2019.

Mills concludes: “For many shoppers, a Valentine’s Day gift is a token of affection rather than an extravagant expense and as such, the average amount spent on gifts is much less that spent on other events, such as birthdays and Christmas. Key gifting categories will be jewellery, particularly for female recipients, and food & drink gifts such as the traditional box of chocolates and items such as Champagne or Prosecco. Retailers should highlight different price points in their Valentine’s Day gifting ranges to ensure customers can find an option that is affordable for them.”

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