Arlington, VA—According to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), sales of consumer electronics accessories, excluding batteries and blank media, will continue to increase in 2014. The CE Accessories at Retail report projects a rise of $13 million, bolstered by tablet and smartphone accessories, headphones and earbuds, and it raises 2014’s CE accessories sales projections to $8.5 billion. The report also noted that quality is the most important factor when choosing CE accessories, while need and brand name also influence consumers’ decisions.
The study found that “59% of online consumers surveyed purchased CE accessories in the last year. The most popular items purchased by online consumers were earbuds (42%), wireless phone chargers (41%), wireless phone cases (32%) and wireless mice (30%). In addition to extra memory cards for digital imaging devices and over-the-ear headphones, these are consumers’ most planned accessory purchases for the year ahead.”
CEA also looked at consumers’ buying behavior, finding “the majority of online consumers surveyed (66%) say physical stores are the main channel they use to shop for, learn about and purchase accessories, citing convenience as their primary motivation.” Online consumers noted that this option offers the best prices, convenience and enables easier browsing and comparisons. In addition, “only a small percentage of consumers, however, use mobile devices to shop for accessories (7%) or actually buy items (2%).”
Other key findings of the CE Accessories at Retail research include:
• 77% of online consumers say they plan ahead for their accessory purchases, rather than make impulse buys (23%).
• Consumers who do make unplanned purchases say store displays (27%) have the biggest influence on their buying behavior.
• 50% of consumers buy an accessory at the same time they purchase the CE device for which it is intended.
• While purchase motivation varies by the type of CE device with which an accessory will be used, the most common reason is to replace a broken accessory (26%).
• About half of consumers (48%) are interested in personalizing their accessories through color (67%) and design options (62%).
• About half of consumers are interested in saving money by purchasing either packages containing all accessories (52%) for a particular device or some other type of bundled package (42%).
The CE Accessories at Retail study (March 2014) was administered via Internet web form between December 13–20, 2013 to an online national sample of 1,029 U.S. adults who purchased a consumer electronic accessory in the past 12 months. The study was designed and formulated by CEA Market Research. ce.org