Promising start to 2018 Event Calendar with Valentine’s Day spending set to hit £726m

Savvy’s latest Valentine’s Day research (across 1,000 UK shoppers) reveals that 40 percent of UK shoppers are planning to get involved in Valentine’s Day this year. The research also indicates how much shoppers expect to spend along with the inside track on what they will be giving and hoping to receive on this romantic occasion.

With consumer confidence shaky and grocery volumes stagnant, retailers will be pleased to see that shoppers plan to spend more this Valentine’s Day, giving the retail events calendar a solid start to the year. While shoppers are cautious in their spending, our broader research shows they have a desire to make the most of events. At the same time, retailers across the board continue to increase their focus on calendar events. While discounters, from Aldi to B&M see events as drivers of incremental sales, the big four are using events as part of their strategies to differentiate.


Key findings:

How do shoppers feel about the occasion?

  • 39 percent of shoppers said they expect to spend more on Valentine’s Day 2018 than they did last year (this rises to 52 percent amongst 18-34 year olds).
  • Of those that plan to make the occasions
    • Valentine’s Day is perceived to be a special day for 70 percent of shoppers and 62 percent are looking forward to it.
    • 56 percent say that they don’t mind spending more to make the day special.
    • 55 percent plan ahead for which items to purchase – this rises to 70 percent amongst 18-34 year olds.

 How has the market for Valentine’s Day changed?

  • Savvy’s analysis estimates the value of Valentine’s Day to the retail sector will reach £726m for 2017, up £39m from last year.
  • 56 percent of those planning to celebrate Valentine’s Day will be going online to buy presents and this rises to 70 percent amongst 18-34 year olds.

 What are UK shoppers looking to buy and what’s on their own wish list to receive?

  • The gift women would most like to receive is flowers (30 percent), followed by a card from a shop and a meal at a restaurant – both scoring 28 percent apiece.
  • Men are most hoping to receive chocolate this year – 26 percent, closely followed by a meal at a restaurant (24 percent) and then a shop bought card – 23 percent.