How are Millennials Affecting Brick and Mortar Retailers?

Everyone seems to be writing about and marketing towards millennials these days, and now, research has revealed a little more about millennial purchasing habits.

According to a new report from Yes Lifecycle Marketing, millennials are buying from e-commerce giant Amazon at a higher rate than their older or younger generational counterparts.

The report highlights that 79 per cent of millennials have bought products off of Amazon in the past month.

Now, this doesn't have to mean that millennials are killing in-store shopping entirely - have you seen the crowds at Square One? In terms of shopping in general, it might just mean that millennials have found an option that's more convenient for them and better fits their digital lifestyles.

The president of Yes Lifecycle Marketing had another take on why Amazon in particular is succeeding with millennials.

“Amazon Prime benefits draw in millennial shoppers more than other generations by aligning with their preference for loyalty messaging and programs,” said Michael Fisher, president of Yes Lifecycle Marketing. “By segmenting their customers by generation, marketers can pinpoint customer preference for elements like messaging, channel and timing, and define distinct strategies that resonate with those audiences. And in turn, marketers will create long-lasting relationships with their customers.”

When Yes Lifecycle Marketing surveyed over 1,000 consumers of all ages in March 2017, they found that more than half (55 per cent) of millennials choose to buy from Amazon for its Prime benefits and more than three quarters (76 per cent) do so because of its prices.

“Amazon has done a good job of delivering cross-channel communications that speak to millennials’ preferences and behaviors, reaching them where they want and how they want, and other brands should take note,” said Michael Iaccarino, CEO and chairman of Infogroup, parent company of Yes Lifecycle Marketing.

So, where does that leave other generations in the world of online shopping?

The report found that baby boomers are more likely to value Amazon for its convenience and product selection, while Centennials are more likely to shop in-store.

Overall, the online shopping giant proved popular consumers in general, regardless of generation, with 63 per cent of consumers having made a purchase on Amazon in the past month.

If in-store shopping is a dying industry, it might not be just millennials who are killing it.

After millennials, members of Gen X were the second most likely to buy from Amazon, with 69 percent reporting a purchase in the past month.

Further, while 18 per cent of Centennials and 19 per cent of millennials said that the in-store experience is one of the top three factors that drive brand loyalty, only 11 per cent of baby boomers agreed.

Despite the mass purchases made on Amazon and the reported generational trends, the report also showed that shoppers of all ages agree on one thing: the in-store experience is equally important as the digital one.

That might be a very promising sign for traditional brick-and-mortar retailers, especially if they can stay current with customer preferences.

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