Maybe it's "dadvertising" backlash. Or maybe the kids simply blew most of their wad on Mom for Mother's Day. Whatever the reason, Dad isn't going to do as well on Father's Day this Sunday as he did last year, according to a new study from Horizon Media.
Although six in 10 Americans plan to celebrate Father's Day this year, only 60% plan to give their dad a gift this year, down from 78% who said they would give Father's Day gifts in 2014, according to the agency's Finger on the Pulse survey.
Although men are more likely than women to give gifts to their dads (86% vs. 55%), some 61% of women buy gifts for their spouse. This suggests that women are the bigger market, although men are more likely to be buying for their own fathers.
“To ring up incremental sales, it’s important to make the final push about ‘all the dads in your life,’" says Kirk Olson, VP of TrendSights, Horizon Media. "Women are driving the majority of gift purchases and to pull their heartstrings, remind them that their own dads deserve as much love as the fathers of their children.”
While moms receive jewelry and flowers, dads are most likely to receive practical gifts. Just like last year, gift cards are top gift with 39% intending to give one for Father’s Day, followed by clothing and accessories (30%). Nearly three in 10 (29%) expect to give dad a food or drink-related item ranking as the third-most-popular gift and 20% plan to give him a passion or hobby-related gift, bumping this category down from the number two spot last year. Men’s personal care products climbed to the #5 spot with 18% saying they will give things like razors and shaving cream.
Home improvement gifts dropped from the #4 spot to the #6 spot -- just 14% say they will go the tools and hardware route; Technology related gifts tied for #6 with 14% saying tech is their gift of choice.
“With the focus on practical, everyday gifts and controlling spending, pushing technology, power tools and other big ticket items may be an uphill battle," says Olson. "Instead, retailers should focus on quick hit gift ideas like men’s clothing and accessories.”
Children are cost-conscious when it comes to dad. More than one in four (26%) say low prices are the most important factor in determining where they shop, making it the No. 1 choice among gift-givers. By comparison, a low price was the fourth most important factor in 2014. Last year's top factor, "a store specializing in the gift they want to buy," ranks as the second choice this year.
As for Dad's favorite retailer, forget about it — that ranks last in priority about where to shop, as it did last year. “All of this suggests to retailers that the final messaging push for Father’s Day should definitely be targeted at women and communicate easy gift ideas, low prices and last minute deals," says Rich Simms, EVP, managing partner, Horizon Media. "They want to celebrate and give, but this year in particular they want retailers to make it easy.”
Children are more likely to rely on the Internet than friends and family when it comes to Father's Day shopping. Almost half (47%) will go online to browse or shop, whereas 39% say they will browse stores until they find the right gift and 36% will seek recommendations from friends and family members to inspire them and give them ideas.
“As the day approaches, people will be looking to friends and family for last-minute ideas," says Olson. "Paid social media or influencer outreach campaigns could make all the difference.”
This is the second year Horizon has fielded its Father's Day survey.