Alpha women seen heading back to the stores


ChartGinger Consulting has been keeping track of what trend-setting women are doing – it calls them Alpha Women – and what it has found is that they are both doing better financially while at the same time adapting to new economic realities. The plan to add splurges and luxuries into their purchasing plans at long last, and it the pattern holds, most other women will soon follow suit.

53% of the alphas are plotting a splurge in the form of a nice vacation, an investment in new furniture or in some other purchase that was considered too much of an extravagance in recent years.

Ginger principals Mary Van Note and Beth Perro-Jarvis explain that the group, which it says is usually six to 24 months ahead of the curve when it comes to female trends, has accepted that this economy isn’t in a phase, it is what it is, and they are figuring out ways to deal with it while still working in a few expenditures on items that cannot be considered absolute necessities.

“They are accepting this not-so-new normal and are balancing thoughtful spending with regular saving,” said Perro-Jarvis in a news release. “Last year, we saw Alpha women ready to add small accents back into their lives. They may have ‘splurged’ on decorative pillows to refresh their homes. This year, they are adding a couple of zeros and buying a new sofa and some cocktail tables,” she added.

“At the macro economic level, growth starts in manufacturing,” Van Note added, in the release. “But in the consumer space, spending starts with Alpha women. Where Alphas go, other women follow — and this is a great sign for consumer spending in the coming months.”

If other women do follow as expected, the ramifications for the economy could be huge, since women are said to influence 85% of all purchasing decisions, including 60% in the automotive category.

Small luxuries that may be coming back into play include clothing, spas and manicures, cable service upgrades, eating out and gym memberships.