With winter in full swing, how are consumers staying warm? CivicScience Q4 2022 polling results show that The North Face and Carhartt were the top outerwear brands this season, but how do popular boot brands rank?

January polling of over 3,000 respondents shows that nearly 20% of U.S. adults are still in the market to purchase winter boots this season, with an additional 14% saying they’ve already purchased a pair. Gen Z adults and women make up the largest percentage of shoppers who are ‘very likely’ to make a purchase.

Looking at several leading winter boot brands, Sorel winter boots take first place, with nearly half of respondents favorable to the brand (49%). Following closely behind is Timberland (46%). 

Even though The North Face was the most popular outerwear brand this season, as well as the top brand among skiers and snowboarders, the outdoor recreation company did not top the leaderboard for winter boots (41%). UGG platform boots are sold out everywhere, but the shoe company also took the bottom half. 

Consumers Care About Boot Durability the Most

With lots of winter boots to choose from, how do consumers decide which pair to purchase? The results show that durability is the most important factor (41%) when shopping for winter boots. Trailing closely behind is comfort (37%). 

Even though Americans are growing more price sensitive, price is a determining factor for just 10% of boot shoppers.

However, differences exist depending on boot favorability: 

  • Comfort and price rank the highest among UGG favorables.
  • Style/fashion is the least important to Columbia, L.L. Bean, and Sorel favorables.
  • Columbia favorables care about durability the most, and UGG favorables care about it the least.

Sorel Consumers Are the Most Influenced by Social Media

When deciding which products to buy, many consumers turn to social media. CivicScience data from 2022 show that more than two-fifths of consumers say their friends and contacts on social media influence the products they buy. 

Looking at three distinct boot brands, consumers favorable to Sorel report the strongest levels of influence (21%) by social media. However, UGG boot favorables are the most influenced in general, with nearly two-thirds saying their friends and contacts on social media influence the products they buy at least ‘a little.’ Conversely, Timberland boot favorables are the least influenced on social media.

Shopping habits clearly vary by boot brand favorability — for a deeper dive into the insights and trends shaping the outdoor boot market, as well as the broader outdoor apparel industry, work with us.