Occasions are events at certain times of the year or certain stages in people’s lives when they are more inclined to purchase certain types of products or services.

With Occasion Segmentation, you can identify the right time and place to sell products precisely when your customers are looking for them.

Think of flowers on Mother’s Day, roses on Valentine’s Day, chocolates on birthdays, crystal wine glasses for weddings, and airline tickets at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Occasion Segmentation can be highly effective when combined with Price Segmentation because of people’s willingness to pay more during special occasions as compared to at other times.

Occasion Segmentation can also be powerful when combined with Benefit segmentation where you can offer customers not just what they want for the current occasion but something they perceive to be of significant benefit as well. 

Occasion Segmentation
Christmas: An example of Occasion-based shopping
(Image source)

Occasion Segmentation: A Definition

Occasion Segmentation is the marketing strategy that divides customers into groups based on their purchasing habits during different occasions.

The reality is that certain products are in greater demand on certain occasions. By exploiting this need, you can increase revenue and profits for your business and increase customer satisfaction by giving the customer what they want, when they want it.

To understand Occasion Segmentation, we need to first classify occasions into different types.

There are basically three types of occasions:

  • Regular
  • Universal
  • Rare

Regular occasions are those that occur to everyone with regular frequency but not necessarily at the same time. Examples: Birthdays, Anniversaries.

Universal occasions are those that happen to most of society at the same time. Examples: Christmas, Thanksgiving, Summer Vacations.

Rare occasions are those that may happen to everyone but rarely and very rarely at the same time. Examples: Weddings, Deaths. 

Here’s a table showing common occasions, their type and the products which are in high demand during these occasions.

Types of OccasionsExamples of OccasionsProducts in high demand during these Occasions
RegularBirthdays, AnniversariesCakes, chocolate, toys
RegularValentine’s dayRoses, chocolate
RegularFather’s Day / Mother’s DayFlowers
UniversalChristmasFlights, Gifts
UniversalSummer VacationsFlights, Hotels, Beach toys
UniversalThanksgivingFlights, Expensive food
RareWeddingsFlowers, Expensive gifts
RareDeathsFlowers, Coffins
RareBirthsChocolates & Flowers (for the mother) and baby toys
Products in high demand on Different Occasions

Some occasions can be a mix of two types. For instance, Valentine’s Day can be both a regular occasion and a universal occasion. 

Benefits of using Occasion Segmentation

Greater customer satisfaction

Using Occasion Segmentation you can deliver greater customer satisfaction because you will be selling the right product at the right time, thereby giving customers what they want, when they want it.

Occasion Segmentation will help you focus your efforts on the right people exactly at the time that they are ready to make a purchase. This will mean a better customer experience, leading to increased sales and profits for your business.

Higher customer retention & loyalty

Customer loyalty is key to the success of any business. When customers are satisfied with their purchase experience, they are more likely to become repeat customers.

Occasion Segmentation can help you improve your customer loyalty by providing a better purchase experience each time. This will encourage customers to stay with you, rather than shop around for a better deal.

Increased sales and profits

Customers are compelled to purchase for occasions – be it a wedding, a birthday, an anniversary or Christmas.

Purchases made for such occasions are usually gifts for someone else.

And when buying a gift for someone else, we tend to spend more money than when we buy something for ourselves and we don’t usually go around looking for the cheapest alternative.

On top of that, such purchases are often made at the last minute. And at the last minute no one has time to compare prices or look for cheaper alternatives.

What does this mean in practice?

This means a properly executed Occasion Segmentation strategy can not only increase your sales but stand to increase your profit as well.

Examples of Occasion Segmentation

Valentine’s Day

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Occasion Segmentation for Valentine’s Day
(Image Source)

Valentine’s Day is a great example of Occasion Segmentation in action. It is both a regular occasion (occurs every year) and a universal occasion (most people celebrate it).

As such, it provides businesses with an opportunity to sell products that are related to love and relationships.

Products that tend to do well during Valentine’s Day are flowers, chocolates, and jewelry.

These products tend to be more expensive than other types of products, providing businesses with a higher margin.

In fact, the segmentation of the jewelry market is often done based on needs and occasions.

A Birth

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Occasion Segmentation for a birth
(Image Source)

Selling products linked to a baby’s birth is a classic example of Occasion Segmentation and stores use this by having sections dedicated to products for newborns.

All new parents will buy some form of baby product in the first few days following their child’s birth and will regularly purchase different products for years to come.

This provides businesses with an opportunity to sell products such as diapers, milk powders, baby clothes, and toys.

Mother’s Day

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Occasion Segmentation for Mother’s Day
(Image Source)

Mother’s Day is a special occasion for many families. It is a time to celebrate and show appreciation for mothers and mother figures. For businesses, Mother’s Day offers a perfect occasion to sell products specifically targeting those who wish to buy a gift for their mother or a mother figure.

And many people leave this gift-buying till the last minute, giving business the chance to make good profits on these sales. 


Occasion Segmentation is a marketing strategy where customers are classified into groups based on different occasions when they are more likely to buy certain products or services.

Occasions can be classified into 3 types: Regular, Universal and Rare. Examples of occasions are birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, Christmas, Thanksgiving, etc.

Targeting products and services using Occasion Segmentation can provide numerous benefits including customer satisfaction, customer retention, and an increase in sales and profits.