Americans Have Increased Their Impulse Spending by 14% In 2022

The average person spends $314 per month on impulse purchases, up from $276 in 2021 and $183 in 2020

Sixty-four percent of U.S. adults report an increase in their impulse spending in 2022, according to an annual survey commissioned by Slickdeals, the only shopping platform powered by millions of avid shoppers.

Three in four (73%) respondents said most of their purchases tend to be spontaneous — a large jump from 59% who held the same sentiment last year.

The survey of 2,000 American shoppers aimed to examine impulse spending habits as compared to surveys conducted in April 2021 and April 2020. All three polls were commissioned by Slickdeals and conducted by OnePoll.

$314 on Impulse Purchases

According to this year’s survey, the average person spends $314 per month on impulse purchases, up from $276 in 2021 and $183 in 2020. Furthermore, the most the average person is willing to spend on a single item is $310, up from $277 in 2021 to $157 in 2020.

Increased impulse purchase habits are affecting overall reported spend. However, 68% said inflation has had a “huge impact” on what they spend their money on.

Seven in 10 have been more aware of their budget this year as a result. Forty-one percent of shoppers added they had to spend more on essentials because of inflation.

According to Louie Patterson, personal finance content manager for Slickdeals, “This year’s survey indicates Americans are spending more on impulse purchases than in the past two years.

While inflation is certainly impacting budgets across many essential shopping categories, interestingly, we’re also seeing consumers reporting an increase in the frequency of their impulse spending.”

The research found the most common unplanned buys in 2022 include clothing (35%), food and groceries (30%), household items (29%), shoes (28%), and consumer technology (27%).

The study revealed half (52%) are impulsively buying equally online and in-store, while 42% in 2021 and 53% in 2020 did most of their shopping online exclusively.

While shopping online, seven in 10 are more likely to spend impulsively on their phones while lying in bed — up from 68% in 2021 and 66% in 2020. Shopping in bed was found to make up for 37% of overall impromptu shopping.

Sixty-seven percent said spontaneous shopping sprees positively affect their mood — a 2% increase from last year.

The emotions shoppers feel after making a purchase include happiness (41%) and excitement (40%) — but a third (34%) admit they shop out of boredom. Two in three (67%) have even made an impulse purchase just to escape the fear of missing out.

Unplanned Purchases Actually Save Them Money

However, more than half (58%) said they’ve saved money with their impulse shopping.

Patterson added, “Fear of missing out is a powerful motivator for impulse purchasing, but as indicated in the survey, 58% of Americans report that unplanned purchases have actually saved them money.

We regularly witness the positive effects of impulse purchasing through our community of shoppers helping one another find the best prices at any given time.

Tapping into a great deal on household items, coffee or technology products can ultimately help you save on your budget.”

What Do Americans Buy on Impulse?


1. Clothing 35%
2. Food/groceries 30%
3. Household items 29%
4. Shoes 28%
5. Technology 27%
6. Books 27%
7. Takeout 26%
8. Toys 25%
9 .Coffee 25%
10. Spa services 24%


1. Food/groceries 48%
2. Household items 42%
3. Clothing 40%
4. Coffee 33%
5. Toys 29%
6. Takeout 28%
7. Books 26%
8. Vehicles 25%
9. Technology 22%
10. Spa services 20%


1. Food/groceries 47%
2. Clothing 38%
3. Household items 38%
4. Technology 27%
5. Coffee 27%
6. Vehicles 25%
7. Takeout 23%
8. Shoes 23%
9. Books 22%
10. Video games 20%

To learn more about the survey, visit here.

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Hi! I am a millennial mom with a passion for personal finance. I have always been “into” personal finance but got inspired to start my blog after a period of extended unemployment. That experience really changed the way I viewed my relationship with money and the importance of accessible personal finance education.