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Mintel survey eyes savings in back-to-school shopping

CHICAGO — Research by Mintel shared on Thursday reveals how parents across the country are trying to save on items for the back-to-school shopping season.

Some of the key trends Mintel found were:

  • 48% shopped sales or clearance racks or outlet stores to save on back-to-school shopping last year.
  • 32% bought clothes on sale throughout the year in 2012 and saved them for the new school year, 36% did the same for school supplies.
  • 37% say they used coupons to cut their back-to-school budget last year.
  • 26% compared prices online before purchasing in store or through a mobile app on their smartphones before purchasing in store.

The research also asked: What are parents buying and how much are they spending? The results were:

  • 33% of parents spent more on school supplies in 2012 than they did in 2011, 24% spent more on electronic products and 36% saw a bigger apparel and shoes bill.
  • The average family spent $80 on school supplies last year, $224 on electronic products and $244 on clothes.
  • 76% of parents say that back-to-school in-store promotions and items shown at the end of the aisles usually catch their attention.
  • 53% of U.S. parents say they worry about how they will afford their child's back-to-school supplies and clothing.
  • 21% of parents say they wait until school starts to see what other kids are wearing before they purchase new clothes for their child.
  • 40% of moms and dads say they worry that if their child doesn't have the "right clothes" or supplies, other kids will tease them.
  • 91% of American parents believe it's important for their child to have all the supplies they need to start school.

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