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Sep 22, 2017
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Report says millennials prefer to shop in store for deals

Published
Sep 22, 2017

A study on shopping behaviors has revealed that millennials prefer to shop for the best prices in store while baby boomers are the ones shopping online, potentially shedding light on what triggered the retail apocalypse.


First Insight


The study was conducted by First Insight on 750 shoppers across the US. It pooled data on shopping habits, purchase behavior, discount expectations and influences driving purchase decisions.

"The retail industry has been operating on the outdated assumption that [b]oomers are shopping for deals primarily in store and [m]illennials are searching for deals mostly online,” said Greg Petro, CEO and Founder of First Insight.

The Northeast has seen the largest behavioral shift differentiating where millennials and baby boomers look for deals. In that region, almost 3/4 of millennials visit multiple stores to find the best price. Conversely, not even half the boomer population shops around in store for deals, with 60% shopping online for the best price.

The West Coast shows an even split of online and in-store shopping for both generations. The South shows more millennials shopping in store at 71%. Only 63% of boomers said they bargain hunt in store in the South, preferring online shopping in the region.

The Midwest region showed 14% more baby boomers shopping online, whilst millennials visit stores 12% more frequently than their boomer parents.

Affluent boomers making $100,000 annually or more are 17% more likely to shop online, whereas income made less difference in millennial shopping habits.

Petro said, "The behavior between these generations is evolving, and to benefit, retailers must recalibrate their approach to marketing, inventory and pricing to attract deal-seekers who may have been overlooked based on outdated perceptions.”

With the retail apocalypse hitting many companies, this study is sure to trigger new strategic planning to meet customer needs. In-store assortments and experiences need to cater to millennials in ways they have not previously done if retailers do not want to become casualties in the shifting landscape.

First Insight conducted the study in March, 2017. The research was pooled from 750 shoppers across three generations: millennial, generation X and baby boomers.

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