Millennial Myth-Busting Update

In last year’s blog post The Millennial Online Shopping Myth, we busted the myth that millennials only shop online and exposed that what they’re truly after is a balance of bricks and clicks. Recent retail studies show what millennials are truly after: convenience, consistency, relationships and experience.

Why does it matter?

According to a recent Accenture study, the 80 million millennials in the US spend approximately $600 billion a year. Today’s millennials include young adults with careers, children and their own homes. The Accenture study forecasts that by 2020 US millennial spending will “grow to $1.4 trillion annually and represent 30 percent of total retail sales.”  Understanding this market can make or break your business.


Millennials expect in-store check out to be as quick-and-easy as shopping online. Waiting in line doesn’t work for the millennial shopper. Tablet check-out, self-checkout kiosks and other advanced digital payment technologies like Just-Walk-Out Shopping get millennials through the payment process as fast as possible and with little interruption in their activities.


According to the Accenture study, 68 percent of all millennials want a consistent experience from a retailer whether they are in the store, online or on a mobile device. Millennials expect mobile devices to enhance their in-store experience, making it more personal and allowing them to price-shop. According to the National Retail Federation, two in three Millennials use smartphone apps to shop in-store. They want the online experience and the in-store experience to mesh together, creating a welcoming, convenient experience.


Millennials are more interested in experiences than shopping. Shopping should be quick and easy, but experiences are enjoyed and shared. Turn shopping into an experience to win the millennial shopper. Not only will you have their loyalty and their business, but also they will likely share their experience on social media, marketing your business for you with only the cost of creating the experience. Sometimes simple changes in lighting, signage and seating can create just the right ambiance for a sharable experience.


Millennials seek a connection with their retailers. They want to feel special and understood. Creating a relationship by learning about the shopper and developing customized shopping experiences drives millennial loyalty. Mintel, a market research firm, says 60 percent of millennials are willing to share their personal preferences and shopping habits with marketers to enjoy the personal touch that information provides. According to an Accenture study, 95 percent or more of millennials want retailers to actively seek a relationship with them. However, this relationship must feel authentic to the shopper. A NewsCred study reports that 31 percent of millennials are more likely to respond to forthright communications than those that are perceived as sales-y. Keep it real.

Understanding today’s millennial means finding ways to address their biggest needs. Provide a quick-and-easy purchase process. Provide online and in-store shopping experiences that shoppers perceive as consistent. Make shopping an experience deemed worthy of the shopper’s time and efforts. Connect with the shopper in a way that feels personal and authentic to them. Address convenience, consistency, experience and relationships and you’ll win over the millennial shopper. To learn about how Randal Retail can help you make the changes you need to your retail location, contact us today.

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