By Tonya Garcia, MarketWatch
And while 41% would normally go to a Halloween party with friends or host one themselves, this year, only 19% will, the data show.
Advantage Solutions did find, however, that 22% of Americans will host or attend a Halloween party with just family, compared with 28% during a normal year.
With consumers still making plans for some sort of Halloween festivities, retailers are preparing – and holding out hope – that the sales will come.
At the Goldman Sachs Global Retailing Conference on Wednesday, Kohl’s Corp. /zigman2/quotes/210414114/composite KSS +0.87% Chief Executive Michelle Gass said demand involving the home, including cooking and décor, has continued.
“We’re already seeing the uptick of things around harvest and Halloween,” she said, according to FactSet. “[W]e expect… that this trend is going to continue for some time, as people are spending more time in their home.”
And candy company Hershey Co. /zigman2/quotes/202765576/composite HSY -0.52% said during its second-quarter earnings call in late July that it begins shipping product in the summer, but has a strategy if this year is dramatically different.
“[A]bout half of our product for Halloween is purchased for self-consumption,” said Hershey Chief Executive Michele Buck, according to FactSet.
“[I]f trick-or-treat tends to be a little lower than expectation, clearly, we’ll focus even more on the treat-for-me and the candy bowl occasion. So you already know that we shifted some of our portfolio to more everyday packaging to protect the downside, should Halloween sales be a little bit lighter.”
Buck said at the time that the company was keeping close contacts with retailers to keep on top of trends, but was upbeat about the prospects for the holiday.
“We feel good about many retailers wanting to kind of lean in,” she said. “We also think that consumers will find creative and sage ways to trick-or-treat. It is an outdoor event. And it’s an event where a lot of masks are already worn.”
Advantage Solutions data shows that Walmart Inc. /zigman2/quotes/207374728/composite WMT +1.02% is the top choice for candy consumers, with 64% saying they’ll head to the retail giant for their sweet supply. And 67% say they’ll buy their candy in October.
September and October is also normally when early holiday shopping begins. According to the latest COVID-19 Barometer from Kantar, Christmas spending will fall this year, with 53% of global consumers feeling an income impact from the pandemic. Another 20% expect to feel an impact.
“Consumer confidence looks like it will take a hit as many household incomes continue to be damaged and concerns about the virus spreading again grow,” the report says.
Shoppers are planning to turn out for the holiday season, but they might do it far earlier.
Data from marketing company Fluent shows that 78% more consumers plan to shop before Thanksgiving this year versus last year, with many, 56%, expecting shipping delays to affect their purchases, a sign that the high level of online shopping done during the pandemic isn’t going to stop anytime soon.
Retailers and brands are gearing up to make the most of what will come from the holiday season, with Target Corp. /zigman2/quotes/207799045/composite TGT +0.33% making its first announcement back in July and other retailers following with Thanksgiving announcements.
Walmart and BJ’s Wholesale Club Holdings Inc. /zigman2/quotes/203668982/composite BJ +0.69% have pushed out their toy lists for parents who are already giving some thought to what they’ll give their kids this year.