Study details shopping habits of millennials


Millennials shop differently than their parents, but when it comes to the end result, they are looking for the same thing: a great deal.

According to the Blackhawk Engagement Solutions’ “Millennials Disrupt Shopping” report, based on two separate surveys of 500 millennial consumers each, smartphones are a dominant method of connection to the web for millennials, with 89% using them to connect to the Internet. This compares to 75% using laptops, 45% using tablets and 37% using desktop computers.

In another disruptive shopping pattern, social media is millennials’ primary source for shopping news and discovering new products. TV only ranks sixth.

However, while the technology is different, millennials are still looking for the same thing as their parents – a good deal. Ninety-five% of survey respondents have more or the same sensitivity to price as last year. Additionally, price has the greatest influence on millennials’ purchase decisions above all other factors, including product quality, brand, store and availability.

Millennials are also value shoppers. For categories including electronics, entertainment, sporting goods, clothing, wireless plans and even groceries, the majority of millennials would choose a higher-value rebate offer over an instant discount.

Other notable findings include:

  • Google and Amazon are favorites for comparing prices on smartphones: Amazon (46%) and Google (43%) dominate millennials’ preference for price comparison activities on their smartphones.

  • Retail apps are sort of where it’s at: For value, savings and rewards, millennials moderately use the apps of the retailers they shop frequently.

  • Millennials choose higher-value rebates over instant discounts across shopping categories:

  • Millennials will consider Buy Online, Pickup In Store (BOPIS) for an incentive: BOPIS could offer an opportunity for retailers to get millennials in store and save on shipping costs: 88% of millennials say they would consider buying online and picking up in store to save $10 on a $50 item.

  • Gift cards believed to be safest for online shopping: 64% of millennials believe that gift cards are safer to use online than any other digital payment method. Sixty-six% believe gift cards limit identity fraud.

  • Millennials embrace loyalty programs: 69% belong to a retail loyalty program and 70% of those are happy with the program.