Clichéd as it might be, chocolates remain the classic treat exchanged on Valentine’s Day. The National Retail Foundation says consumers will spend $18.2 billion on Valentine’s Day this year. Almost 50% of consumers plan to buy chocolates for their loved ones, an estimated $1.7 billion in dollar value. A survey by WalletHub uncovered that 94% of people celebrating Valentine’s Day want to receive candy and chocolate. Being a product information hub, we wanted to find out the data story around this amorous holiday.
An analysis powered by the Indix Cloud Catalog revealed, among other things, that chocolates packaged especially for Valentine’s Day are more expensive than others. We analyzed 5,279 in-stock chocolate products spanning 12,631 offers (product + store combinations) selling across 64 online stores from more than 49 brands. This data was recorded in the past 30 days. 21.1% of these products are marketed as Valentine-themed chocolates (the products include the words “valentine”, “gift”, or “heart” in their title). The average sale price of Valentine-themed products is $37.7 as opposed to $31.8 for regular chocolates.
Based on product count, the top six brands are Hershey’s, M&M’s, Lindt, Godiva, Ghirardelli, and Russell Stover. Although the product count for Godiva and Ghirardelli is lower than that for the top three brands, they carry a much higher percentage of Valentine-themed assortment. The same goes for Russell Stover. Given that the brand is known for special occasion and gift products, the high percentage of Valentine’s related chocolates is not too surprising.
For most consumable products such as chocolate, price comparison is most effective when done on a per ounce basis rather than total product weight. Godiva, Russell Stover, and Ghirardelli show the most stark price difference between Valentine-themed and standard chocolate. We need to keep in mind though that although the price difference might not look like much (it’s less than a dollar in most cases), when seen in congruence with the amount of spending expected on chocolates, the number is significant.
It’s pretty clear that if you’re not a stickler for the red, pink, and heart-shaped fluffy packaging, you’re much better off buying standard non-Valentine candy. Maybe you can supplement that with a homemade gift? But in case Valentine-themed chocolates are all that floats your boat, next year, make sure you buy them about three weeks before the special day. A price history analysis of the past two years revealed that Valentine-themed chocolates are cheapest three weeks before the holiday. There’s no doubt that marketing and positioning play a big part in this sugar sweet holiday, but you can make the most of it if you act early.
Happy Valentine’s Day from the Indix team.