How New Year’s Resolutions Impact Consumer Buying Behavior

New Year’s has become synonymous with resolving to be a better you in the new year. January 1 marks not just the beginning of many consumer’s journeys to their goals, but also a turning point for industries that stand to profit from these sudden shifts in consumer behavior. After a long holiday season filled with food and drinks, the most popular resolution is to lose weight, but gyms are not the only industry that will benefit from consumer spending in the new year.

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As discussed above, the new year inspires many to make changes to their lifestyle by way of fitness. The fitness club industry profits from these ambitious folks, who are determined to change their bodies in the new year. The average gym membership is $58 per month, or $696 per year. A recent study shows that nearly 50% of Americans ditch their gym memberships by the end of January. Overall, only 22% of those who joined a gym made it through the entire year. The gym industry depends on these fitness dropouts, however. In the 2014 episode of the podcast Planet Money, they visited a Planet Fitness and realized the gym had the capacity to hold only about 300 people, but had signed up 6,000 members. Half of the Planet Fitness members don’t ever go to the gym, Planet Money found.

With the excitement of the holidays over, and the dread of the cold winter months ahead setting in, another popular resolution is to travel more, but to do so in 2018 will be expensive. The “2018 Global Travel Forecast” states that travel prices are expected to rise sharply in the coming year. Airfares are anticipated to increase 3.5%, hotel prices by 3.7%, and ground transportation is expected to rise 0.6%. The increase in global airfare comes as crude oil prices rise. According to, in 2017 the average cost of a hotel room per night in popular U.S. destinations ranged between $88-$254, while the average round-trip domestic flight in 2017 was $361.  

After spending the holidays alone, or in an unhappy relationship, many people focus on improving their love life in the new year. According to Marketdata Enterprises Inc., dating services are a $2.5 billion business in the United States alone. PlentyOfFish, a popular dating site, reports that the first Sunday in January is the busiest day of the year for new members on their site. agrees, citing a 42% increase in membership from December 26th through February 14th.

Once the ball drops, it’s game on for those who made resolutions, and for these businesses who will profit. If you are part of the 40% of Americans who make New Year’s resolutions—stay motivated, and you’ll be one of the 8% who achieves your goals.