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Office Supplies Market Research & Business Solutions

Pens, planners, pencils, pushpins, paper, paint, plus dozens of other things that don’t start with the letter “p.” If it’s sold at an office supply store, we know about it.

Companies monitor their competition and examine which brands and products are selling with our point-of-sale (POS) office supplies market research. With detail at the category, brand, item, and product attribute levels, we give manufacturers, retailers, and financial analysts a better read on what’s happening in the market. Our data reflects actual sales reported by all major channels representing 95% of the retail market in the U.S.

Our office supplies market research helps companies make more informed product development and marketing decisions and deliver effective client sales presentations.

In addition, we combine NPD’s pervasive retail footprint with Nielsen’s analytics solutions to enable clients to optimize marketing programs, including marketing mix analysis.

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Retail Tracking

Unmatched point-of-sale information enabling you to understand market dynamics, partner with retailers, and identify opportunities for growth. We recently added additional retailers to substantially grow our POS footprint, increasing market visibility and providing the most complete and accurate view of the market available. Our Weekly Retail tracking provides the ability to monitor product launches, promotions, and seasonal sales cycles, especially when fast market response is required. Covering more than 50 office-supplies categories, this service delivers more frequent and more granular insight about what’s happening at the category, subcategory, brand, and model levels.

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Store-Level Enabled Retail Tracking

Store-Level Enabled Retail Tracking complements our national Retail Tracking Service– it can help you determine whether sales are distribution-driven or whether certain parts of the country are contributing more to national share or driving growth.
The velocity measure set that is part of Store-Level Enabled Retail Tracking takes into consideration sales volume (Annualized Industry Volume or AIV) rather than considering store count alone, for a more meaningful read on where products are selling and how they are performing.

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Account Level Reports

These reports give retailers and their approved vendors one data set to guide business decision-making and improve results.  Vendors approved by a retailer to purchase their reports will have access to the same data in the same tool and format that the retailer receives, providing the visibility to truly partner with the retailer to drive growth.

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Back-to-School Monitor

Answer your critical marketing questions during and after the back-to-school season so you can quickly adjust selling strategies and marketing promotions to capitalize on what consumers are reporting. The Back-to-School Monitor’s data and analysis are based on an online survey fielded weekly from July to September. The study focuses on tracking consumers’ shopping and buying dynamics to deliver insights on the total office and school supplies market, key consumer groups’ shopping behaviors, channel and retailer shifts, influence of school lists in shopping, and how school supplies fit in with other back-to-school purchasing.

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Shopping Activity Services

Get access to insights on shopping, browsing, and buying visits across all channels, retailers, categories and demographics. View conversion rate and average spend measures and see how they vary by retailer, season, and demographic. Gain an understanding of where else your customer is shopping and buying.

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Modeling and Analytics

Where are the opportunities? Where are the dangers? What happens next? Now you can know. The NPD Group’s Solutions portfolio provides insight into what will happen in the future in your market.

Our team combines NPD POS and consumer information; custom survey research; distinctive, one-of-a kind research techniques and methodologies; and a half century of industry expertise to identify opportunities, uncover threats, forecast sales and market share, optimize pricing and assortment, and much more.

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April 1, 2015

Today’s Teachers: School Supply Purchasing Dynamics & Behaviors

Know the classroom products teachers prefer, so you can make better product development and marketing decisions

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April 22, 2014

Weekly Data - Now Available

Now our market-leading information is available weekly, enabling you to more closely monitor performance and improve business results.

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October 12, 2012

Back-to-School Monitor reveals 2012 best-sellers, trends to watch

The Back-to-School Monitor delivers sales results, detail on trends, and insight on shopping dynamics to help you answer crucial marketing questions b

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Press Releases

April 27, 2016

Top Quick Service Burger Chains Put a New Twist on Combo Meal Deals and Consumers Respond

Chicago, April 27, 2016 — After spending time focused on weaning consumers off of the steep dealing used to drive visits during the recession, the major quick service hamburger chains are back to their roots of offering combo meal deals and consumers are responding, finds The NPD Group, a lead ...

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April 26, 2016

From Paint Nights to Adult Coloring, a Handmade Movement in the U.S. is Shaping New Opportunities for the Office Supplies Industry, According to NPD

Port Washington, NY, April 26, 2016 – Crayons, colored pencils, and chalkboards may evoke a feeling of childhood nostalgia, but as more adult consumers exercise the art of crafting, a handmade movement is driving up art and coloring supply sales. This is also carving out new opportunities for th ...

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February 18, 2016

Writing Instruments Drive Growth for Office & School Supplies Industry in 2015, NPD Reports

Port Washington, NY, February 18, 2016 – The U.S. office and school supplies industry grew 3 percent in 2015 to $12 billion, with $1.2 billion stemming from online sales, according to retail sales data from global information company The NPD Group. The bulk of the industry’s revenue came from the Wr ...

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March 10, 2016

Planners Are About the Future, Not the Past

I’ve been using a Franklin Planner for more than 25 years. Much of my adult life is recorded in the paper pages of that calendar system, which is designed to push users to organize their time by focusing on their personal values. I don’t know if I’ve become more moral, more focused, or more organiz...

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September 29, 2015

Retail Data 101

How Much Impact Does Change In Your Market Share Have On Your Business? This is the first in a series that breaks down retail data measures for the math-averse. Whether you’re just getting started, or if this isn’t your typical area of focus—this is for you. Bet Your Bottom Dollar Let’s ...

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September 29, 2015

Office Supplies Industry Scorecard

The U.S. office supplies industry enjoyed sales of $23.8 billion in the 12 months ending in June 2015—a YOY increase of 2 percent. Online purchases reached $1.4 billion, and grew at a much faster rate—19 percent—compared to brick-and-mortar sales (1.1 percent)....

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August 10, 2015

What feels longer than a school day to a 10-year old?

This year’s Back-to-School season Ahh the Back-to-School shopping season! That make or break time of year for many of the manufacturers and retailers who toil in the world of academic supplies and related paraphernalia.  It can be a stressful time. And although the stress levels this year are ...

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Insights and Opinions from our Analysts and Experts

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