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Spotting Seasonal Sales Trends in Consumer Data

April 1, 2022
Ashley Jefferson Author 4 mins read
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Whether it’s new TVs before the Super Bowl or grills for the start of summer, there are certain products that we all expect to have seasonal sales trends. After all, in the Northern Hemisphere, you typically don’t need a snow thrower in mid-July or a new lawn mower in January. However, a close examination of TraQline data reveals that more products have a seasonal trend than you might expect. Here are a few highlights from our data.

Below are the 20 products with the largest sample size in TraQline:

  1. TV Total
  2. Cell Phone
  3. Computer: Laptop or Notebook
  4. Stereo Headphones
  5. Microwave: Countertop
  6. Video Game System
  7. Tape Measure
  8. Garden Hose
  9. Speakers: Portable Mini, Bookshelf, Soundbars
  10. Interior Paint per Ticket
  11. Refrigerator
  12. Portable Fan
  13. Clothes Washer
  14. Room Air Conditioner
  15. Tires: Auto/Minivan per Ticket
  16. Air filter
  17. Vacuum: Upright
  18. Spray Paint/Aerosol Paint
  19. Barbecue Grill
  20. Coffee Maker

All of the bolded items, a remarkable 18 out of 20, show evidence of seasonality for when they are purchased.

Which Quarters Show the Most Seasonal Sales Trends?

Certain quarters are more likely to have product seasonality than others. Eleven of the 20 categories see their biggest seasonal bumps in Q4, between the months of October and December. Q2, between April and June, comes in second place for seasonal products. Q3 and Q1 have one category each – Refrigerators and Interior Paint, respectively. Why do Q4 and Q2 have so many more products affected by seasonality?

Products showing seasonal trends in Q4

Many of the seasonal sales trends in Q4 can be attributed to the holiday shopping season. Consumers have come to expect deals on certain products at this time of year, which increases demand. Consumer electronics, such as TVs, laptop and notebook computers, video game systems, and speakers, are often on sale and are a part of the Q4 seasonal sales trends.

New products are typically announced early in the year- especially at events such as CES. So in addition to holiday sales, retailers are likely to further reduce prices to move inventory and make room for the latest and greatest products coming to market.

However, it’s not all consumer electronics. Items such as tape measures, upright vacuums, coffee makers, and minivan tires also see seasonal upticks in Q4. Vacuums and coffee makers may also be benefitting from holiday sales. Tires, on the other hand, could be benefitting from consumers who want tires that can better handle snow and ice.

Products with seasonal trends in Q2

From April to June, the Northern Hemisphere is warming up after winter, and we see an increase in purchases meant for the outdoors. Garden hoses, barbecue grills, and spray paint all benefit from a lift in sales during the Spring. Portable fans and room air conditioners also trend in this quarter, as consumers seek to cool down as the world warms ups.

Do Demographics Play a Role in Seasonal Sales Trends?

While there is a lot of overlap in what men and women purchase that shows seasonal trends, there are some unique differences. For example, coffee makers don’t make the top 20 purchases list for men, but rank 8th on the list for women. Men purchase more TVs in Q4 of the year, whereas women purchase more cell phones during the same period. Appearing only on the list of products for seasonal trends for men is auto batteries. Like tires, it is somewhat surprising that auto batteries make the list. Typically, consumers buy them only when they need them. It could be that, as the weather gets colder, auto batteries are more likely to need to be replaced. On the list for products women purchase that show seasonal sales trends in Q1 is household cleaners. Perhaps this is in preparation for spring cleaning!

TraQline Trends Data Help You Identify Sales Trends

While retailers and manufacturers expect certain seasonal trends in what consumers are searching to purchase, access to historical consumer panel data can highlight trends that might otherwise fly under the radar. Curious about seeing what trends may be hiding just out of sight in your category? Contact TraQline for a demo today!