How to Reach Dad on Father’s Day

shopping cart internet

Every June, sons and daughters say thanks to dad by showering him with love, affection, and of course, gifts. The weeks leading up to Father’s Day are spent searching for the perfect tie, power tool, or “World’s Best Dad” coffee mug. Using Compete’s panel of 2 million consumers and the results of the Spring 2011 Online Shopper Intelligence™ study, I was able to shed some light on consumer spending this Father’s Day and what e-retailers can do to best reach these shoppers.

This year, 54-percent of consumers plan to buy a Father’s Day gift this June for a special dad in their lives. In total, consumers plan to spend an average of $70 on their dads. Women are more likely to shower dad with love, as 66-percent of women will buy a Father’s gift, whereas only 33-percent of men will do the same. Sons and daughters are not the only ones buying gifts. While 78-percent of consumers will buy a gift for their father/step-father/father-in-law, 29-percent will buy a gift for their husband/partner, and 5-percent will buy a gift for their son/step-son/son-in-law.

for whom are you planning to purchase a fathers day gift

The online channel will play an important role this June, with 34-percent of shoppers planning to buy their Father’s Day gifts online. While some of these shoppers know exactly what they will buy dad, many do not and will instead shop around online for the perfect gift. To reach these shoppers, e-retailers need to effectively target these consumers.

Last year, e-retailers only captured 6-percent of all Father’s Day related searches (searches in which the search term used included the words ‘father’s day’ or ‘fathers day’). That means e-retailers potentially left millions of gift seeking consumers out in cyber space! Investing more in Father’s Day related terms could help e-retailers engage and convert more shoppers this time around.

Of the e-retailers who did attract Father’s Day searchers last year, personalized gift retailers came out on top. (Because what better way to tell dad you love him than with a personalized coffee mug!) In fact, personalized gift retailers accounted for 6 out of the top 10 retailers receiving Father’s Day search traffic. Interestingly, the only mass merchant among the top e-retailers is Amazon.

top retailers receiving traffic from fathers day searches

Leading e-retailers should take a cue from Amazon and find ways to better reach gift seekers. To help shoppers last year, Amazon created a specialized Father’s Day landing page. It provided gift ideas for different kinds of dads—camping and backpacking equipment for the “Outdoorsy Dad,” televisions for the “Relaxed Dad,” and Men’s shoes and watches for the “Best-Dressed Dad”. Last June, this page on Amazon received over 400,000 visits.

amazon fathers day screenshot

*image source June 2010

Designing a Father’s Day landing page like this one, filled with different gift ideas is a great way to help consumers find gifts… and a great way to help retailers find consumers! Hopefully this year, e-retailers will be more prepared for the online gift seekers and optimize their search strategies and websites to attract these shoppers.

The Spring 2011 Online Shopper Intelligence™ report was compiled from a survey of 3,269 online purchasers between April 14 and March 5, 2011. For more information about the study, email Debra Arbesman at This article was originally published by Retail Online Integration, and you can access the original post here.

About Debra Miller Arbesman:
Debra Miller Arbesman is senior associate, retailer and consumer products at Compete, a Kantar Media company that helps brands improve their marketing based on the online behavior of millions of consumers.