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Financial Innovation August 12, 2022

Quicktake: Inflation is impacting back-to-school shopping

Quicktake: Consumer insights from Bread Financial

Back-to-school 2022: How is inflation impacting shopping plans?

With students soon headed back to class, shoppers are seeking deals and shopping around.
While inflation is front-and-center for back-to-school/college (BTS/BTC) shoppers, they are still showing signs of spending resiliency in response to persistent price hikes. However, these shoppers aren’t being foolhardy with their budgets – they will be seeking deals and shopping around to maximize dollars spent.

Inflation impact
Regarding of whether they are shopping for back-to-school or college, nine in ten shoppers are challenged by inflation this year.

Spending intentions
The majority (54%) is planning to spend more on BTS/BTC purchases this year. While inflation surely influences this outlook, shoppers say they could be coaxed into spending beyond their initial budgets.

Savings strategies
While pandemic-era shoppers favored consolidated shopping habits and buying items based on availability, 76% say they are seeking deals and shopping around this year.

Key takeaway: Navigating inflation
While shoppers, so far, continue to show spending resilience as inflation persists, their desire to maximize dollars spent is very real – and will likely grow the recession threat looms and the holiday season approaches. With deal-sensitive shoppers shopping around again, there’s prime opportunity for brands/retailers to convert new customers – or even win back those they lost due to pandemic-era consolidated shopping patterns.

Quicktake BTS Graph4

Source: Bread Financial proprietary study, Back-to-school Look Ahead survey, July 2022.