US Millennial Shoppers 2017: How a Digitally Native Generation Is Changing Retail - eMarketer
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US Millennial Shoppers 2017: How a Digitally Native Generation Is Changing Retail

eMarketer Report

By: eMarketer

Published: January 30, 2017

Jump to: Executive Summary | Table of Contents | List of Charts

Executive Summary

The youngest millennials are on the cusp of college, while the oldest have already started to plan for their children’s college years. But regardless of the age range, millennials as a whole all grew up with the internet—the first generation to do so—which has influenced the way they shop.

  • US millennials prefer digital shopping, even while in a physical store, and they tend to be the earliest adopters of the latest media and digital shopping tools.
  • Although the average debt burden on millennials is often exaggerated, many do face monthly payments. Some 37% of millennials have never had a student loan, compared with 64% of baby boomers. This economic burden, along with entering adulthood during the Great Recession, has made them a cost-conscious generation.
  • Millennials and Gen Xers are similar in their likelihood to buy online—more than 90% of internet users in both age groups have made a digital purchase in the past year. But millennials are more likely to research products or make a purchase via their smartphone.
  • Millennials’ comfort with mobile shopping extends to stores, where they are avid omnichannel shoppers. Nearly all have researched products online before buying in-store.
  • Despite a strong presence on social platforms, millennials still respond well to email marketing, as over half list email as the primary influence to make a purchase from a retailer website.
  • Although just one in 10 say that a retailer’s philanthropy is the most important characteristic of a retailer, a significant portion of millennials consider a store’s values when choosing where to make a digital purchase.

"Two-thirds of millennials prefer digital shopping over shopping in physical stores. In fact, they often like to combine the two, using their mobile phones to research while they’re in-store."

Table of Contents

Who Is the Millennial Shopper?

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Ecommerce Behavior

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Marketing to Millennials

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33 charts are included in the full report:

US Millennial Shoppers 2017: How A Digitally Native Generation Is Changing Retail

US Internet Users Who Prefer to Shop Digitally vs. In-Store, by Generation, March 2016 (% of respondents)

Who Is the Millennial Shopper?

Consumer Trends that Will Have the Greatest Effect on Their Industry According to US Marketers, May 2016 (% of respondents)

US Parent vs. Nonparent Internet Users Who Are Heavy Apparel Purchasers*, by Generation and Category, Dec 2015 (% of respondents in each group)

Debt and Economic Uncertainty Temper Spending

Types of Debt Owed by US Millennial Internet Users, 2015 & 2016 (% of respondents)

US Millennial Internet Users Who Own a House/Condo, by Age, May 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

US Millennial vs. Nonmillennial Digital Buyers Who Have Participated in Sharing Economy Services, Feb 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

Retailers’ Values Can Differentiate Them

US Digital Buyers Who Say a Company's Affiliation with a Cause Would Make Them a Repeat Customer, by Age, Nov 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

Most Valuable Characteristic of Retailers When Making a Digital Purchase According to US Millennial Internet Users, April 2016 (% of respondents)

Important Product Attributes According to US Internet Users, by Generation, March 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

Attitudes Toward Multiculturalism According to US Internet Users, by Age, June 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

Bigger Emphasis on Experience

US Internet Users Who Believe It Is Important for Brands to Own Physical Stores, by Generation, Feb 2016 (% of respondents of each group)

Ecommerce Behavior

US Internet Users Who Have Made a Digital Purchase, by Generation, June 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

US Digital Buyer Penetration, by Age, 2015-2020 (% of population in each group)

Products Purchased Digitally by US Internet Users, by Age, June 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

US Grocery Buyers Who Have Ordered a Meal Delivery Kit* Digitally, by Generation, May 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

US Millennial vs. Nonmillennial Digital Buyers Who Have Ordered from Digital Grocery Delivery Services, Feb 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

Millennials Embrace Mobile Shopping

US Internet Users Who Plan to Shop for Deals via Smartphone on Cyber Monday*, by Age, Aug 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

Devices Used to Purchase Products Digitally According to US Internet Users, by Age, Jan 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

US Proximity Mobile Payment User Share, by Age, 2016 (% of total)

US Internet Users Who Are Likely to Use a Mobile Payment Method, by Age, July 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

Frequency with Which US Smartphone Users Make In-Store Payments via Smartphone, by Age, 2015 & 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

Omnichannel Shoppers

US Internet Users Who Plan to Webroom* During the Holiday Season, by Age, Sep 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

US Millennial vs. Nonmillennial Internet Users Who Use Digital Devices Before, During and After In-Store Shopping Trips, 2015 & 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

US Internet Users Who Like* to Purchase Products Digitally and Pick Up In-Store, by Demographic, Oct 2014 & Oct 2015 (% of respondents in each group)

Marketing to Millennials

Factors that Influence Purchase Decisions According to US Internet Users, by Generation, March 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

Preferred Methods of Communication from Brands About Sales, Offers and Coupons According to UK/US Internet Users, by Generation, June 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

Primary Action that Influences US Millennial Internet Users to Purchase Products from a Retail Site, April 2016 (% of respondents)

Sources Used to Research a Product/Brand Before Purchase According to US Internet Users, by Generation, May 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

US Facebook Users Who Use Social Media to Research Products/Services, by Age, Q3 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

Primary Social Media Platform Used by US Millennial Social Media Users, by Age, Aug 2016 (% of respondents)

Daily Time Spent on Facebook, Instagram & Snapchat by US Millennial Social Media Users, Aug 2016 (% of respondents)

Images Are Important

Importance of the Camera Function on a Mobile Device According to Millennial Smartphone Users in North America and the UK, by Age, Aug 2016 (% of respondents)

US Millennial Digital Buyers' Digital Shopping Behavior, Feb 2016 (% of respondents)