Easter is a big time of the year for American retailers. According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), approximately 80 percent of U.S. adults plan to celebrate Easter, going so far as to spend an average of $151 per person on everything from candy to decorations.
Those under the age of 35, in particular, embrace the holiday. Younger consumers (millennials and Gen Z) are more likely than the average adult to say they plan on celebrating Easter, both the traditional and whimsical aspects.
In fact, consumers under the age of 35 are the only age group that’s seen a consistent increase in those celebrating compared with a decade ago. Over that period, the percentage of those planning to celebrate Easter has remained over 83 percent.
With that age group in mind, it’s important for retailers to ask themselves how to best engage with these consumers. Traditional aspects of the holiday, including Easter egg hunts and big meals with family and friends are among the top activities. Therefore, it’s important to offer the items that will appeal to consumers this holiday.
Hot cross buns are always a popular addition to Easter meals. These rolls have been a seasonal tradition dating back hundreds of years. They symbolize devotion and have a religious component in that they are marked with a cross made of icing.
Easter provides a great opportunity to get creative with cakes and other desserts. Bunnies are a popular subject for decorating, as the Easter Bunny is perhaps the most iconic non-religious image associated with the holiday. One unique idea that can add an artistic flair to your Easter cakes is to use a unicorn theme but apply it to the bunny. Unicorn cakes already feature pastels and cute animal imagery, which can easily be transitioned to Easter.
Retailers are getting creative with their desserts by using traditional Easter candies to add flair and taste. Tim Hortons recently introduced a donut topped with mini Cadbury chocolate eggs, while Dunkin’ is putting Marshmallow Peeps on a new donut.
Aside from products, your bakery can also run promotions to get more customers in the door this season. Family-focused events such as Easter egg hunts, photos with an Easter Bunny, and Easter egg or Easter dessert decorating can provide an interactive and fun element to your business.
One of the most important preparations, as with any holiday or season, is to start with announcements as early as possible. You can post photos of colorful Easter desserts or special Easter baskets filled with cookies or other sweet treats from your bakery on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest to generate interest.
You can also make you bakery more online-friendly to increase Easter business. The NRF reports that those under 35 are also more inclined to hop on their smartphones to assist in Easter shopping. From 2015 to today, the percentage of younger consumers who planned to use their smartphones to help with purchasing decisions around the holiday has jumped from 63 percent to 74 percent.