Camping Equipment Sees Strong Sales Growth, While a New Outdoor Culture Takes Shape: NPD Group Reports

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Camping-related products including coolers and hammocks saw exponential growth in the 12 months ending June 2015

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The rugged notion of what it means to be “outdoorsy” is expanding into cozy and familiar territory, as consumers more frequently turn to their own personal space or seek the comforts of home for their outdoor experiences. At the same time, camping-related products including coolers and hammocks saw exponential growth in the 12 months ending June 2015, according to global information company The NPD Group.

“While consumers want to experience the outdoors, they do not want to give up all the comforts of home, hence the interest in products such as high-tech coolers and comfortable and easy-to-use hammocks,” said Matt Powell, sports industry analyst, The NPD Group. “This is especially important to Millennials, who embrace the values of the outdoors and want to share those values in the way they dress, play, work, and express themselves. Camping is a perfect way for Millennials to express those values, and they are finding ways to bring its products beyond the campgrounds.”

Hammock sales have more than doubled in dollars and units over the past two years, a trend that is happening at the same time that hammocks are becoming increasingly popular among college students and commonly found adjoining the trees on university campuses. Eagles Nest Outfitters is the category’s leading brand in terms of dollar and unit sales, and growth.

“In the U.S., a hammock culture and community has taken shape among younger millennials,” added Powell. “This has helped bring ‘hammocking’ to a whole new level.”

Driven by the Yeti brand, cooler sales have also soared. Hard-sided coolers, which comprise more than 70 percent of cooler sales, grew 34 percent in dollars in the 12 months ending June 2015 compared to 18 percent during the previous time period. Sales of soft-sided coolers more than tripled, giving a significant added boost to the category. In line with this trend, sales of thermal/insulated containers are also rising; dollar sales grew by 56 percent, compared to 11 percent the year before.

“Consumers are looking for innovation not just in tech devices, but in everything they buy and use – including food preparation and storage,” said Powell. “They don’t want to settle for lukewarm anymore, and are willing to pay a higher price for more premium products that prove to be effective and versatile.”

Source: The NPD Group, Inc. / Retail Tracking Service

Data is collected from the athletic specialty, sporting goods, sport specialty, and sport specialty e-commerce channels

About The NPD Group, Inc.
The NPD Group provides market information and business solutions that drive better decision-making and better results. The world’s leading brands rely on us to help them get the right products in the right places for the right people. Practice areas include apparel, appliances, automotive, beauty, consumer electronics, diamonds, e-commerce, entertainment, fashion accessories, food consumption, foodservice, footwear, home, mobile, office supplies, retail, sports, technology, toys, video games, and watches / jewelry. For more information, visit and Follow us on Twitter: @npdgroup and @npd_sports

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