With holiday shoppers expressing caution ahead of this holiday shopping season, our holiday outlook this year concentrates on BrandIndex Value scores. For every category surveyed we look at the top five brands by Value score and the top five Value improvers compared to the same period last year.
Mobile Devices and Consumer Electronics are the only two categories to show overall value improvement versus last year, and brands in these categories feature heavily on this year’s "must have gifts" lists.
Brands with top Value scores:
Southwest and JetBlue's lead the sector by a sizeable margin on Value perception—with Southwest the clear winner. Southwest Airlines’ reputation for value, exhibited by its ‘Bag Fly Free’ program, is clearly resonating with travelers.
Frontier was the only airline to make any significant gain in Value perception, despite the company’s financial troubles (bankruptcy) and reorganized flight schedules and routes.
Jeans dominate this category with Levi's, Wrangler and Lee all making it into the top 5 Value list for Apparel.
Calvin Klein's 6 points year over year boost doubled improvements seen by Polo Ralph Lauren–the 2nd biggest improver.
Our surveys show that consumers are continuing their shift towards online shopping, expecting to buy 46% of their holiday gifts online this year. eBay and Amazon both make the top 4 Value improvers list and Amazon has the #1 Value score, outpacing big-box retailers like Target, Kohl’s, J.C. Penney and Best Buy.
Apple and some of its key products lead the Value improvers list this year, and iPhones and iPads have been flying off store shelves all year. Apple produces three of this year’s top 5 "must have gifts" for 2011. That said, Apple is shut out of the Top 5 Value brands list for this sector, which is led by Sony, LG and Samsung.
Starbucks celebrated 40 years this year with a logo change and continued enhancements to their menu and coffee products–and posted top Value improver scores despite still having a net negative score. Domino's is the second highest Value improver.
Subway’s celebrity endorsements of their $5 dollar footlong, help to place them as the top value brand in the category. Wendy’s comes in at number 2.
LG is both one of the largest Value improvers and the overall Value leader amongst Mobile Devices. iPhones are positioned well going into this holiday season with a double digit Value improvement and lots of buzz surrounding the recently released iPhone 4S.
Tostitos leads the way in Value gains with high quality ingredients and its 'surprisingly simple' tagline resonating with respondents. Ritz Crackers, introduced all the way back in 1934, still appeals to snack lovers and leads the snack category with the highest Value ratings.
For this sector we looked at value scores for Dads only. Black & Decker has made a double-digit improvement to an already strong Value score since the 2010 holiday season. The brand also breaks into the Top 5 Value scores list for Tools/Hardware alongside Value leaders Craftsman and DeWalt.