Gift Wrap Buyer Demographics

Goals

To identify global buyer demographics for gift wrapping products (i.e., gift wrap/wrapping paper, gift bags, and tissue paper), including age, income, gender, socio-economic status, and other available purchaser demographics. This information will be used to help inform a report on the gift wrapping industry.

Early Findings

Gift Wrapping Industry

  • A 2019 Grandview research report estimates the global gift wrapping market size at $15.1 billion in 2018, with product innovation and increased buyer purchasing power driving market growth (estimated 7.4% CAGR) through 2025. This analysis predicts that decorative boxes, followed by pouches and bags, will experience the fastest growth during the forecast period.
  • Transparency Research also notes that growth in e-commerce channels will help drive significant growth in the industry through 2028.
  • The European Brand and Packaging Design Association notes that COVID-19 may work to help the gift wrap market, as "gift packaging has become more of a must-have than a nice-to-have option at the checkout." They also note potential supply chain issues as a result of COVID as a potential challenge.
  • There are several key players in the gift wrapping product industry, including Hallmark Cards, Mondi Group, Card Factory, IG Design Group, and Karl Knauer AG. Papyrus, Minted, and American Greetings are also key industry players.
  • Wrapping paper holds approximately 50% of the global market share of the gift wrapping industry, with gift bags representing less than 5% (approximate). Tissue paper is not broken out separately but is likely part of the "other" gifting products represented in this global market share breakdown.
  • North America holds the majority of the global market share (35.5%). Consumer interest in gift wrapping products in North America is driven by a desire to improve the attractiveness of the gift.
  • Wrapping paper sales in the US alone were estimated to have increased by 4% in 2018, according to Sundale Research.
  • Asia-Pacific is also cited as a key growth market for gift wrapping products, with Central and South America cited as potential growth regions due to the expansion of global players in these markets.

Industry Trends

  • Recent trends in the market include a movement toward simpler, minimalistic designs and customized prints.
  • Another notable industry trend is the move toward more sustainable gift wrapping options. Tanya Graff, a style editor at Martha Stewart Living, says "...the trend is definitely away from throwaway options and toward a more eco-minded approach."
  • Sundale Research also highlights the trend toward "green packaging" in the industry. In a separate survey among US consumers in October 2019, 50% noted they would give gifts without wrapping, while 2/3 of survey participants claimed they would be "happy to receive" gifts without wrapping.
  • To further reinforce the acceleration of this trend, IG Design Group removed glitter from their wrapping papers because the substance was not recyclable.
  • The move toward sustainability will likely benefit gift bags (considered a more sustainable option), with American Greetings reporting that gift bags now account for 30% of their business.

Consumer Demographics

  • Numerator, a United States market research firm, reports that Hallmark products are typically purchased by consumers who are older (with a purchasing index of 105), Caucasian (108 purchase index), higher-income (113 index for consumers reporting over $125,000 annual income and 109 index among those with $100-$125,000 in annual income). The buyer profile also suggests a more educated consumer (112 index among those with an advanced degree).
  • American Greetings buyers demonstrate a similar consumer profile: older (120 index 55-64, 153 index over 65), Caucasian (110 index), higher income, and more educated.
  • An older survey by Wrag Wrap (a sustainable gift wrap company) indicates that gift wrap may skew toward females, with 10% of men "never wrapping a gift in their life", more than half of women "wrapping the gifts their men buy", and half of men saying they feel "annoyed, frustrated, or intimidated" by present wrapping.
  • While it appears the market may have historically trended older, given the movement toward sustainable gift wrap options, younger consumers may eventually be a key demographic for this industry. Research has found that Gen Z (22 and under) in particular is more willing to pay for sustainable brands than other shopper groups.

Messaging

  • Hallmark Facebook messaging focus is on the power of connection and does not appear to be aimed to a specific target: "Hallmark helps you live a caring, connected life full of meaningful moments."
  • Similarly, IG Design says about its products, "We transform paper and a whole lot more into products that help the world celebrate life’s special occasions."
  • The Gift Wrap Company (purchased by IG Designs in 2018) notes that it "continues to serve a wide variety of customers looking for packaging which expresses their own unique sense of style and personality."
  • Minted says, "Our purpose in life is to uncover exceptional design from all over the world and bring this to savvy consumers who won't accept anything else."

Summary of Early Findings

  • In our early research, we uncovered only limited publicly-available information surrounding the demographics of gift wrap, gift bag, and tissue paper buyers. Some challenges include gift wrap and bags often being part of a broader corporate product portfolio, with information provided at a corporate brand level (e.g., Hallmark) and the lack of recent surveys focusing on the consumer profile. Many of the industry reports uncovered do not appear to offer information surrounding the consumer demographic (even for a fee), focusing instead on key players, trends, and market segments and sizing.
  • However, an evaluation of industry analyses, trend reports, news articles, surveys, brand demographic profiles, and messaging for key industry players allowed us to develop a directional indication of the demographic gift wrap market buyer. The historical buyer profile appears to be older, female, higher-income, more educated, and Caucasian. Brand messaging suggests that the industry is looking to reach a broader demographic.
  • We were able to identify a key industry trend toward sustainability, which is reflected in more eco-friendly product options in the industry, as well as messaging which highlights a focus on the environment in gift wrapping options (and likely also supports the forecasted growth in the gift bag segment of the market, given the reusability of bags versus paper). This trend toward sustainability may indicate the potential of products in this industry to reach a younger demographic who places a high importance on sustainable, eco-friendly products.
  • Given the limitations in the availability of consumer demographic information for gift wrap, gift bags, and tissue paper, we don't believe further research will yield substantial additional information. However, it is clear that the industry is evolving and we have provided recommendations below that may help shed additional light on the industry and how they are working to communicate with and meet the needs of consumers.

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