When it comes to Mother’s Day gifting, benchtop appliances and personal care items are usually at the top of the wish list and retailers are suggesting it’s likely to be no different in 2021, as consumers embrace cooking at home, as well as making health and wellness a priority.

According to Harvey Norman general manager of appliances, Carene Myers, consumers are prepared to pay more for small appliances that offer better features including connectivity as people spend more time at home.

“The integration of connectivity into cooking products allows all types of home cooks, experts or novices, to become masters in the kitchen. With the use of connectivity, they can explore more recipes or even get a step-by-step guide to preparing the perfect meal. Appliances are getting used more and therefore these products need to be more reliable,” she told Appliance Retailer.

Traditionally coffee machines and mixers spike at Mother’s Day; however, some mums like to upgrade more practical products like their toaster and kettle, particularly with new season colours.

“The attachment rate is very high for toasters and kettles as new colours and designs provide a great uplift to any kitchen, so consumers are always looking for the perfect pair. This year we expect these to continue to sell well but it has been the year of the air fryer so I am sure this will also be on the wish list,” she said.

The small appliance category has thrived during the pandemic, driven by greater buying power among consumers, more consideration of purchases and more disposable income to spend, BSR Group chief marketing officer, Adrian Mitchell has observed.

“Add to that the availability of new and innovative products that speak to consumer demand and social messaging that creates an aspirational taste for unique value-added products,” he told Appliance Retailer.

Pamper products in massage, haircare and home spa categories traditionally sit high on Mother’s Day gift wish lists and this year, Mitchell expects this to expand to air fryers, coffee machines, multi-cookers, pie makers, breakfast collections where the attachment rate sits at 60/40 kettles to toasters, in addition to hand-held garment steamers and steam generators.

When asked about new technology and functionality in the SDA market, there are several innovations. “Cordless technology across hand mixers, mini choppers and stand mixers, intelligent programming on blenders, sensing technology for perfectly cooked toast and advanced digital motor technology in hairdryers,” Mitchell said.

“There has been intelligent optimisation of cleaning and battery runtime on cordless vacuum cleaners. LG canister vacuums also feature dust compression technology. The addition of specialty Wi-Fi Bluetooth and mobile app technologies are a growing trend too.”

Leading Edge Group has also seen consumers spend more on their homes. With more disposable income they are investing in their kitchens and appliances that fit in with new designs and styles.

“Consumers want to spend a little more on good quality premium appliances, moving away from the budget ranges in mass merchants, that can have limited lifespans,” LEG general manager, Charlie Davey told Appliance Retailer.

In previous years, Mother’s Day gifting has seen a focus on coffee, especially in the pod sector, and this is expected to continue this year. “There is also likely to be an increased interest in health-related products – juicers, blenders and steamers – as consumers become more conscious of their wellbeing. Air purification is performing well with a focus on higher filtration levels.

“More features are being packed into small appliances, although app-based products are yet to really take off. Colour and retro designs have proved to be popular, and products must be easy to use and easy to clean.”

Travel restrictions and lockdowns saw people spend more time at home with more disposable income, along with an increased desire to upgrade their appliances, according to Bi-Rite category manager for small appliances and audio visual, Kong Luc.

“Personal care and health/wellbeing products have traditionally been the staple products for Mother’s Day and will always have their place,” he told Appliance Retailer.

“However, innovations in benchtop cooking, coffee machines and floorcare in the past couple of years has opened a gateway for these categories to be considered more for Mother’s Day. During the peak of the pandemic last year coffee was the hype category and I think it will be the same this year.”

Kettles and toasters are becoming more of a design piece and consumers are increasingly conscious about having a matching set, driving a circa 20% lift in the attachment rate compared to previous years.

“In the past, consumers would often purchase a toaster or kettle to replace a broken or faulty unit. This naturally resulted in kettles outselling toasters as the average household uses the kettle more often than the toaster. Now this is beginning to shift,” he said.

“Hearty and healthy home-cooked meals have become the craze with people spending more time at home and sharing their inspirations and results on social media more than ever. Products such as air-fryers, multi-cookers and manual coffee machines have benefited from this and are showing signs of continuing growth due to consumer demand and the integration of smart functionality including pre-loaded recipes and remote functionality via app.”

Coles releases limited edition appliances for Mother’s Day

Coles has launched its new Best Buys range for the Mother’s Day sales period, featuring a heated feet massager for $29.99, facial steam cleanser for $34.99, kneading and heating neck and shoulder massager for $49.99, and coffee machine with milk frother for just $99.99.

Available for a limited time at selected Coles stores nationally, the range includes 20 big-ticket items, including the return of the highly sought-after 3.5L digital air fryer for $59.99. 

Coles general manager for health and home, Jonathan Torr said Coles’ Best Buys covers a range of gift ideas traditionally not sold at supermarkets to help customers conveniently pick up the perfect gift during their grocery run. 

“We know customers are looking for the perfect gift to make mum’s day extra special without breaking the bank, and we have worked hard to ensure that we are offering a range of great value products that she will love,” he said.