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NRF: 48% of Back-to-School Shoppers Influenced by Discounts

The first day of school is right around the corner, but most families aren’t halfway done with back-to-school shopping.

According to the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) annual survey conducted by Prosper Insights and Analytics, coupons continue to have pull, with 48 percent of families stating that they are influenced by coupons when back-to-school shopping—the highest percentage in the history of the survey. Another record high, 31 percent of participants said they would shop online for supplies this year, up from 27 percent last year.

NRF said the average family with children in grade school or high school has completed around 48 percent of their back-to-school shopping as of early August. The survey found that families were 50 percent done with back-to-school shopping this time last year, bringing the percentage down two points.

When asked what back to school supplies families needed to buy, 70 percent needed to buy clothing and 57 percent said they needed to buy shoes.

“Shopping early and often is a trend we have seen from many budget-conscious consumers over the last few years,” said National Retail Federation President Mathew Shay in the press release. “In the weeks ahead, parents will take advantage of the aggressive deals that retailers will offer as they get ready to welcome the fall season merchandise,” Shay said.

“When it comes to big spending events such as back-to-school and back-to-college, families are being very savvy in how they tackle their lists,” said Pam Goodfellow, political analysis for Prosper Insights and Analytics. “Families are slowly completing their shopping this season while taking advantage of expected promotions that will continue through Labor Day, and spreading their budget as necessary,” Goodfellow said.