Back-to-School Marketing 2024 Starts Now: 5 Tips to Plan Your Strategy

Summer is here, and that means back-to-school marketing starts now. eMarketer predicts back-to-school retail sales in the U.S. will grow 3.2% to reach $81.16 billion this year, the slowest growth in 5 years.1

The majority (65.1%) of those sales will take place in physical retail locations; however, ecommerce’s portion of back-to-school sales has risen from 31.5% in 2021 to 34.9% in 2024.

5 Tips for a Successful Back-to-School Marketing Strategy

Number 1: Start promotions now. Nearly half (49%) of US adults will begin back-to-school shopping by early July.1

Number 2: Make offers they can’t refuse. Retailers can secure their share of sales by offering deals and promotions.

Number 3: Timing is key. Promotions must be strategically placed throughout the summer to ensure they’re engaging the maximum number of consumers as they plan their purchases.

Number 4: Have a strategy for online sales. Prior to the pandemic, ecommerce comprised around 23% of back-to-school spending. But in 2024, eMarketer forecasts it will reach nearly 35% of the season’s sales, with 40% of those being K-12 purchases and 29% for college purchases. 2

Source EMARKETER Forecast Feb 2024

Number 5: Maximize your advertising with a multi-channel strategy.

Target Back-to-School Shoppers with Proven Multi-channel Advertising Tactics

By combining the persuasive power of digital advertising with the tangible impact of direct mail, response rates can soar by up to 450% and conversion rates increase by up to 28%.3 Including direct mail in your marketing mix can also increase web traffic by as much 50%4, amplifying your online presence and overall campaign performance. Learn more about the power of integrated marketing campaigns.

Click “get started” below to connect with an expert to plan your back-to-school marketing strategy.

Sources: Consumers Have Already Begun Back to School Shopping,, May 29, 20241; Data Drop: 5 Charts on 2024 Back-to-School Shopping, eMarketer, May 20242; US Modern Postcard, Direct Mail Statistics 20233; 2023 Direct Mail Marketing Benchmark Report – SeQuel Response, sequeldm.com4