As the seasons change, so do consumer habits and purchasing. Depending on the industry that your business is in, seasonal purchasing can have a significant impact on your bottom line. Understanding these changes and preparing for them in advance will be key to an effective marketing strategy.
Spring: Big Ticket Items, New Fashion, Home Renovations and Decor
When spring rolls around, consumers generally focus on big ticket items like purchasing homes and cars. Customers not prepared to make such a purchase will still be buying new clothes and may be concentrating on home renovations, furniture, and decorations. This is generally considered to be a period of renewal: the dreary winter weather has died down and customers are becoming more active again. Many are going to begin preparing for the summer now, and many retailers are going to see their sales pick up. Students will also be purchasing electronics and educational materials.
As the weather begins to warm up, people will slowly be spending more time outside. Many will begin gardening and taking part in other social activities, making some game and entertainment options popular.
Summer: Vacations, Parties, Restaurants and Entertainment
People tend to be more active in the summer. Consumers are going to focus on meals, entertainment, parties, and vacations. When purchasing, they’ll often focus on summer activities — sports equipment tends to be especially popular. This is when a promotion for hospitality-related industries can be perfectly positioned. In college areas, summer can actually be the hardest on retailers: college students can go home for the summer leaving the area deserted. Big ticket purchasing, like homes and cars, are also still common through this season.
Summer means that people are going outside — and this could cause them to take an extra interest in their cars. Vehicle maintenance, repairs, and upgrades will all be more common; customers may want new tires if they’re going on a summer road trip. In certain areas, summer also means a lot of tourists, which can be a big deal for the hospitality industry.
Fall: Appliances, Renovations, Fashion and Home Repairs
The fall months lead into the winter holidays, which means that many households are not spending a lot on recreational items and electronics. Instead, they’ll mostly be focusing on home improvements, renovations, appliances, and other essential items that are nevertheless an investment. Fall can be another month for strong home sales, but this will taper off the closer it gets to winter. Lawn care items and gardening items are popular in the fall as they are in spring, and purchasing for fall-related and winter-related clothes will go up substantially.
As it gets colder, consumers will be spending more time in coffee shops and restaurants, and slowly starting to spend more time indoors overall. Entertainment options that involve the home — such as BBQing or fondue — will also become popular among many demographics.
Winter: Holiday Purchasing and Winter Clothes
Winter is almost universally dominated by a need for winter clothes and holiday purchasing. Of course, holiday purchasing includes practically any retail purchase, ranging from technology to jewelry. Many retail companies will be able to make the majority of their profit over the winter months. On the other hand, winter is almost never used for the purchasing of large items, such as homes or cars. Instead, people are focusing primarily on getting through the holiday season — they may hold off on any purchases for themselves in lieu of buying things for friends and family.
On the other hand, customers still need to purchase things such as winter clothing, winter tires, home maintenance, and automotive maintenance services. Essentials will still be purchased during this time, but there will be less luxury spending overall.
Companies need to tailor their advertisements to the type of purchases customers are looking to make. Not only are there weather changes to compensate for, but there are also population changes in areas in which tourists or college students are common. A good ad will be able to appeal to both the changing demographic and that demographic’s current needs. Because customers often aren’t making spur of the moment purchases, companies also need to plan their promotions and advertisements a few weeks ahead of time.