Mother’s Day Gift Ideas As Presented By Numbers: 2021 Edition

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Mothers Day

Featured Image: iStock/CatLane

Choosing gifts for moms is a tough job. How do you show your appreciation to the woman who has influenced so much of who you are today? No piece of expensive jewelry suffices, and flowers, though a sentimental staple of the holiday, just do not cut it.

But then how, year after year, these gifts keep making the top 5 Mother’s Day gift categories? The reason is simple. We aren’t paying close attention. We aren’t really investing in critical market research.

Let’s elaborate it.

According to a survey result by the National Retail Foundation, 83% of people in the USA plan to celebrate Mother’s Day this year, a 3% decline from last year. Loss of lives plus restrictive spending capabilities due to the coronavirus pandemic could be responsible for this dip.

Those who are celebrating the holiday, plan to spend an average of $220.48 on their Mother’s Day presents. Collectively, this figure comes at a neat $28.09B, up from $26.70B from last year.

The Top 5 Mother’s Day Gifts

Using data from the same survey, the top 5 gift categories according to what shoppers plan to buy for their mothers read something like the list below.

You’ll see that that we have also mention people’s general interest in that particular category compared to previous years.

  • Greeting Cards: 72% (Declining)
  • Flowers: 68% (Increasing)
  • Special Outing: 49% (Slight increase after a sharp fall in 2020)
  • Gift Cards: 47% (Slight decrease but mostly steady)
  • Clothing/Accessories: 40% (persistent increase)

Jewelry, a gift item that has traditionally topped this list is at #6 this year. Is the limiting economy is at fault again? Special outing, such as brunches and dinners etc. have always been in the top 5 but the reason they suffered a sharp dip last year is that the whole world was in a lockdown and all the restaurants and spas were closed.

This year, as the coronavirus vaccine drive has helped things return to a Covid-normal, we are seeing Special Outings reclaim its place.

The most interesting thing we can find on this list, however, is gift cards. 47% of those who are celebrating Mother’s Day this year, plan to give their moms a gift card.

Only 47%.

Why ‘only’? Because when you start asking questions and you ask the people who are receiving the Mother’s Day gifts, the picture changes dramatically. According to a survey conducted by – an online gift card retailer – what moms really want for themselves on Mother’s Day is something that nearly half of the children are not even thinking of buying: the gift card.

According to this survey’s results – which even shocked the company – 63.32% of mothers want to receive gift cards from their favorite retailers as a Mother’s Day present.

Let’s break it down a little.

While majority of moms surveyed wanted online gift cards, the preference was significantly high among mothers of newborns. 87% of moms of who have given birth in the last 12 months want to receive online retailer gift cards.

And do you know exactly how many women have given birth in the last 12 months?

This many: 3.9 million.

If you are an online retailer, this is your time to shine.  

What Else Do Mothers Wants Apart From Gift Cards?

The next 5 gift categories that moms preferred included:

  • Flowers: 43%
  • Personal care: 41%
  • Houseware: 39%
  • Clothing: 32%
  • Events: 37%

Do you see now what we meant when we said a ‘dramatic shift in picture’? Truth is, marketers and brands have woefully been ignorant when it came to really grasping what a woman wants. And this data just proves it.

Jewelry, a gift item that people will be spending $6.08B on this year does not even make it to the top 5 list of what moms wants for Mother’s Day. The next big spending category, – Special Outing: $4.14B – also doesn’t make the cut.

If you are wondering why this happening, the simple answer is lack of communication. We aren’t asking moms what they want. We are making our gift shopping on bases of assumptions and successful brand marketing campaigns.

According to the NRF data, the top 4 purchase considerations for Mother’s Day gifts are:

  • Finding a unique gift
  • Finding a gift that creates a special memory
  • Finding a cost-effective gift
  • Finding a gift that’s convenient for the buyer.

Like we just said, it’s time we start asking moms what they want.

If these two sets of studies have shown us one thing is that there are only two areas where our gift decisions and moms’ preference match: flowers and clothing items.

Perhaps that is why Mother’s Day is considered one of the largest floral holidays in the USA in terms of consumer spending. This is also a gifting category where men are more in tune with their mothers.

According to a market study, 72% more men buy flowers for their mothers compared to women. And it’s not only mothers who receive flowers on Mother’s Day, though they are of course the biggest receivers category at 64%. Apparently, we also celebrate other mother figures in our lives during this festive occasion by presenting them with lovely floras.

Who Are These Mom Figures?

27% of wives receive flowers on Mother’s Day.

18% of mothers-in-law receive flowers on Mother’s Day.

8% of grandmothers receive flowers on Mother’s Day.

8% of sisters receive flowers on Mother’s Day.

8% of friends receive flowers on Mother’s Day.

This data also reveals that 1 in 10 mothers buy flowers on Mother’s Day for themselves.

(Yes, Moms! Yes, to the self love! You deserve all of it.)

It’s also important to note that fresh flowers aren’t the only floral products shoppers invest in. Items such as garden plants and flowering house plants are also fan favorites when it comes to giving them as Mother’s Day presents.

So, What Does This Mean?

In simple words, it means you ask your mom what to get her when you start planning for Mother’s Day. Ask your mom!

But if you want it to be a surprise, buy her a nice piece of clothing with some really beautiful flowers and put in a gift card from her favorite retailer (or a favorite activity) in the bouquet. You can’t go wrong with this.

About The Author

Kelvin Stiles is a tech enthusiast and works as a marketing consultant at SurveyCrest – FREE online survey software and publishing tools for academic and business use. He is also an avid blogger and a comic book fanatic.