Judy Bills said how much her daughter spends on her doesn’t matter so long as it is given out of love. Bills said she doesn’t even like to make gift suggestions.
“She’s on her own,” Bills said. “I’d rather it be from her, her heart and her thought process.”
Bills was shopping for her mother and mother-in-law at CommuniGraphics in North Augusta on Thursday.
The National Retail Federation predicted that shoppers would spend more on Mother’s Day gifts this year than in the past four years.
The federation said the average consumer would spend $152.50 for Mother’s Day this year, an increase from $140.70 last year and from $138.60 in 2008.
Paige Norwood, the retail store manager for Cudos! on Augusta West Parkway, said Mother’s Day is one of their busiest holidays. This was the first year its Columbia County store, Cudos2U, was open for Mother’s Day, and Norwood said shopping has been at high levels for both stores.
“We’re very blessed and pleased, and people are definitely out and shopping,” she said.
Shopping tends to be evenly distributed all week long for Mother’s Day, she said, but Saturday is usually when fathers bring in their children to pick out gifts for Mom.
“That’s so fun to watch, really cute,” Norwood said.
Mother’s Day is special, Norwood said, because although not everyone has a valentine or celebrates Christmas, Mother’s Day tends to be universally observed.
“It’s all over the board: children, men and women,” she said. “Everybody has a mom.”
According to Marianne Bickle, the director for the Center for Retailing at the University of South Carolina, although shoppers are spending more than in years past, they are thinking about their financial choices more thoroughly than they did before the recession.
“Holidays have really been impacted by the recession,” she said. “People are purchasing things on sale, they want coupons and they want things they believe they’re getting for a good deal.”
Bickle said consumers are likely to buy jewelry or flowers, and potted plants rather than cut flowers in recent years. She said she believes that could be because people are more money-conscious today, wanting to give a gift that lasts longer.
“That’s a real big change from what historically people buy,” Bickle said.