There’s a saying that goes, “a sweater is something a child puts on when a Mother feels a draft,” which turns out to be a lucky turn of phrase since clothing has increased most as Mother’s Day gift-of-choice this year.

According to the annual Brand Keys Mother’s Day survey, 88% ofconsumers plan to celebrate Mother’s Day, and clothing is this year’s big winner. Celebrants intend to spend an average of $205.00 this year, up six percent over 2015. Men, following a long-standing tradition, intend to spend more than women, reporting an anticipated average spend of $228. Women reported an anticipated spend of $182. Like many major gift-buying holidays, the majority consumers (65%) indicated they are waiting to make their purchases until the deals shake out at toward end of April and the very beginning of May.

Tradition trumped tech, with cards, meals, and flowers the holiday’s ‘price-of-entry’ purchases. Clothing gifts are up 10 percent. Jewelry was up 7%. Tech related gifts were generally unchanged from last year, with only 12% indicating that category of purchase.

Today Mother’s Day encompasses a broader spectrum of relationships. It’s a universal celebration with the celebrant-range includes virtually everyone: moms, wives, step-moms, female relatives and friends, divorced and single-parent households. It crosses all cultural, ethnic, and religious borders, all of which makes it a real opportunity for retailers.


Brand Keys, the New York City-based brand and customer loyalty and engagement research consultancy, as part of its annual Customer Loyalty Engagement Index, polled 6,133 men and women, ages 18-65 from the nine U.S. Census regions, asking them if and how they were planning to celebrate Mother’s Day, with most consumers indicating multiple gift purchases. The analysis has a margin of error of + 2%.

What Are Consumers Buying For Mom?

(Percentages in parentheses indicate changes from 2015)

Category Percent Purchasing

Cards 95% ( — )

Brunch/Lunch/Dinner 90% (+2%)

Flowers 85% (- 1%)

Clothing 80% (+10%)

Jewelry 59% (+7%)

Spa Services 52% (+2%)

Gift Cards 50% (- 2%)

Books 19% ( — )

Housewares/Gardening Tools 16% (+1%)

Candy 12% (-3%)

Electronics/ Smartphones 12% (+1%)

Where Consumers Are Shopping For Mom?

Discount Stores 55% (unchanged)

Specialty Stores 50% (unchanged)

Department Stores 44% (-6%)

Online Stores 30% (unchanged)

Catalog 2% (-4%)

How Are Consumers Connecting With Mom?

Given the ubiquity of smartphones and the holiday itself, Mother’s Day has become one the most popular holidays to place a call.

Phone/mobile 65% (unchanged)

Personal Visits 22% (+7%)

Online 11% (+1%)

Cards 10% (unchanged)

As we approach the big day itself, it’s probably worth remembering another saying that goes, “a Mother always has to think twice; once for herself and once for her child.”

But when it comes to Mom, when it comes to this holiday, most consumers aren’t thinking twice about celebrating.