Oct 18, 2017

2017 Teacher Purchasing, Spending and Loyalty Survey

Research and report provided by Agile Education Marketing

Over the years studies have shown that teachers spend a lot of time researching and purchasing classroom materials to support their students. Wondering how you compare with your peers nationally?

This year, more than 600 teachers participated in Agile and SheerID’s fourth-annual Teacher Purchasing, Spending and Loyalty Survey. Representing primarily core classroom teachers in grades PreK-12, these individuals schooled us on how they shop for their classrooms every year. Here's how the stats report the story of how teachers support their students with out-of-pocket purchases, and the kinds of shoppers they are for their students. Below are the highlights of the study, with more information from SheerID and Agile Education Marketing available online

Teachers spend a significant amount on supplies and materials. To supplement tight budgets, teachers put some of their paychecks right back into their classrooms — about 11 percent, in fact. During the 2016-17 school year, teachers reported spending an average of $468 out-of-pocket on classroom supplies, and 77 percent said they spent at least $200. Some teachers even reported dishing out as much as $5,000 to purchase materials to supplement student learning.

Teachers value discounts — and are smart purchasers.
Teachers work hard for the money they earn, and they like to use discounts to help them stretch those dollars, particularly in these spending categories: office supplies, computers and electronics, restaurants, entertainment, travel, apparel, and software. In fact, 96 percent of teachers said they are more likely to purchase from a company that offers a teacher discount online when making classroom purchases. Teachers are smart purchasers, as sixty-three percent said discounts need to be at least 20 percent to capture attention.

Teachers conduct extensive research through a myriad of sources.
are so committed to keeping more money in their pockets that they’re willing to seek out great deals. Survey respondents said they learn about sales from a variety of sources. These include: word of mouth (71 percent), email (54 percent), social media (43 percent), online (39 percent), store websites (38 percent) and traditional print ads (27 percent).

Teachers shop for their classrooms often.
Though there is a buying push in the fall, back-to-school season isn’t the only time of year when teachers stock up on classroom supplies. Most survey respondents said they like to space out their purchases; 64 percent said they go on supply runs every month to every few months.

Teachers conduct product research independently and online. If teachers are going to invest their hard-earned money back into work, they’re going to do so wisely. These days, teachers rely less and less on marketing and sales to tell them what they need. Instead, they’re turning to search engines like Google for answers. Of the total survey respondents, 65 percent said search engines are their main source of information for teaching and learning, and 58 percent said the same for education products.

Teachers are tech-savvy consumers.
Many teachers complete their shopping online, with 40 percent of respondents reporting that they make school purchases on the Internet. Though a small group of teachers do report using devices such as tablets and smartphones for their transactions, most (78 percent) complete purchases from their laptop or desktop computers.

Teachers influence purchases, too.
Technology investments have long been considered an administrator responsibility. But, teachers are playing more of a role in the selection and purchasing of technology than you might think. Thirty-eight percent of teachers said they personally choose technology for their classrooms, while 28 percent offer input to a principal who makes the final purchase.

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