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The National Retail Federation (NRF) is out with its quarterly Consumer View report, looking at how Millennial parents “shop, spend and engage with brands differently than parents in other generations.”

Millennials, the report notes, “are parents to 50 percent of today’s children,” and “more than 1 million millennial women become new mothers each year … millennials make a significant contribution to the $1 trillion U.S. parents spend annually on raising their children.” They also are a relatively affluent and educated group: “40 percent hold a graduate degree, or more than double the 19 percent of other parents, and 69 percent of respondents earn more than the national median income of $59,000 a year, compared with 53 percent of other parents.”

Some excerpted study results:

• “With so much information available on mobile devices, millennial parents turn to their smartphones at every point during shopping. The study found 78 percent use their phones to research products (compared with 58 percent of other parents), 75 percent to check prices or availability (also compared with 58 percent) and 71 percent to pay at checkout or place an order (51 percent). In addition, 71 percent will leave a review, process a return or chat with customer service after purchasing, compared with 43 percent of other parents.”

• “Once a brand gains the loyalty of millennial parents, they are much more likely to stick with it than other parents. The survey found 49 percent remain loyal to a brand despite cheaper options, compared with 30 percent of other parents. And 52 percent will remain loyal despite more convenient options, compared with 35 percent of other parents, and 64 percent will shop at a brand they are loyal to before looking at a competitor, compared with 54 percent of other parents.”

• “Millennial parents are often in a hurry, and 86 percent have used same-day shipping compared with just 67 percent of parents from other generations. And they’re willing to pay for convenience – only 53 percent expect free shipping on small orders under $50 compared with 66 percent of other parents. Subscription services – which can supply automatic refills and discounted prices on items such as diapers, formula and baby wipes – are used by 40 percent, compared with 18 percent of other parents.”
KC's View:
I think the points about loyalty and a willingness to use subscription / automatic fulfillment services tie together, and need to be integrated into companies’ marketing programs. This is a generation that likely is more willing than previous generations to avoid the store when it comes to purchasing products that can be bought anywhere … and go to the store for products that are differentiated and reasons that strike them as compelling. And, apparently they have the education to know the difference and the money to spend when it makes sense to them.