Pandemic leading to shifts in spending habits
How have you been spending your time and your money during the pandemic?
“Just kind of chilling at home, following the rules,” said Zac, a shopper we bumped into at Best Buy in West Vancouver.
Being stuck at home has set the trend in how we have been spending our money during COVID-19.
So what’s hot?
“Anything tied to the home,” said Jenn Barr of Best Buy.
“Well we bought a house,” said Caramel another shopper we spotted while shopping for a new printer.
Housing sales are up too and the suburbs are in big demand. So are accessories for the home.
BestBuy says sales of vacuum cleaners are up 50 per cent compared to previous years.
Personal care products are in demand as well, like electric toothbrushes up 75 per cent.
And when stay-at-home orders began lifting in some places, demand for strollers and car seats increased 50 per cent. However, the big surprise is a huge spike in breast pumps, up 600 per cent over last year.
“As more people shift to online shopping Best Buy has become more of a destination for baby products,” explained Barr.
The pandemic has seen a shift in consumer spending not just at Best Buy but also across the country in many sectors. According to payment processor Moneris, some trends have emerged.
“You can see a clear substitution effect. If people are not spending their money on travel they’re improving their homes and essentially making their lives better,” said Peter Goldsztaijn, Moneris Corporate Data Analytics.
Moneris tracked a boom in bike sales in B.C., up 123 per cent over last year. Lawn and garden sales spiked 67 per cent and boat sale rentals and leases are more than double for the coming summer.
Recreational and utility trailers sales are up 68 per cent, which may indicate where most people expect to be later this year as the pandemic continues – at home.
However, sometimes our purchases just are not that much fun.
“Mostly just stuff to clean around the house and hand sanitizers really,” Zac summed up as he continued to browse the aisles at Best Buy.