Retailers Cater to College Students

New York City, The back-to-school season may have a new focus. College students are increasingly interested in decorating their dorm rooms, and they are willing to pay plenty to do it. According to National Retail Federation, college students spent $2.6 billion in dorm room furnishings in 2004. That number does not include the $7.5 billion spent on electronics.

Retailers have responded to this market by offering new dorm-room furnishings, such as more brightly colored backrests and beanbag chairs. Companies are also implementing unique incentives for students. For example, Target Corp. plans to give students free roundtrip bus trips from university campuses and Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. and Linens ’n Things Inc. now have dorm registries on their Web sites.