If lockdown easing goes to plan then this year’s Father’s Day, on June 20, should be something to truly celebrate, with the last of the UK’s restrictions on social contact due to be lifted the next day.
While a hug may be priceless, the opportunity for celebrating makes the gifting opportunities of Father’s Day even more exciting, and even more important for customers to get right this year.
Bypassing the tie and slippers section to find something a little different for dads might need a little imagination and, although those slippers will have had some wearing in over the last year or so, there are opportunities to surprise dad with something different. Here social proof can play a key role in inspiring us with new ideas by showing what other customers like us are buying, as well as the latest must-have items.
Last year DIY or garden focused gifts were popular as dads had the chance to tackle that long list of jobs they might not have had the time to do before. Indeed last year a fifth of people said they were looking forward to spending quality time completing DIY projects with their dads.
Instead, it’s time to think a little differently in the celebration of dads and all they’ve done for their families. For those with children still at home that might be helping with the maths homework, settling the screaming matches of home-schooling teenagers or simply adapting to the switch to working from home.
As socialising ramps up related garden party items will remain popular, but obviously we need a manly twist here since fairy lights and bunting might not quite cut it. Perhaps something for the BBQ, or this year’s hot (literally) must-have, an outdoor pizza oven?
Or, now exercise and team sports are back, how about something sports-related to help get dad fighting fit again and rid him of those extra lockdown pounds? For items like these customers may need a little extra help, a virtual store assistant as it were, to help guide them to the best product. Social proof messaging can help deliver that experience.
Retailers have a golden opportunity to help better inspire their customers to choose an extra special gift online in 2021. Last year nearly half (45%) of UK consumers who bought gifts for their dads did so online, even though stores had opened a week earlier. This number was up from 27.4% the year before.
Spending meanwhile dropped last year, down from £31 to £20. The increased optimism of this year means that spend is likely to increase again. Capturing customer attention online, will be vital. Showing them what is popular and trending can help them discover the latest must-have products. Urgency messaging, which shows customers how many people have bought that outdoor pizza oven since they first looked at it, can ensure that they don’t miss out. Social proof messaging can help customers in presenting dads with the perfect gift – even if that does turn out to be a pair of slippers.