Everybody shops. But not everybody shops the same way. Different demographics tend to have different shopping preferences and behaviors. One thing is for certain, ecommerce shopping habits is on the rise across all demographics. Nearly 80 percent of the entire population of the United States has made an online purchase.
Ecommerce Shopping Habits
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So how can you, as an ecommerce entrepreneur, best target and serve different demographics? Take a look at the shopping differences between generations and genders and adapt your marketing strategies accordingly:
It’s traditionally thought that women drive shopping trends, but when it comes to ecommerce, Business Insider Intelligence reports that men spend nearly as much online as women in the U.S. However, men and women do tend to have different shopping behaviors.
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According to Ecommerce Platforms, men typically enjoy a simple and straight forward shopping experience. They make a purchase when they have an immediate need and typically buy the first product they find that will do the job.
Men do lots of online research and typically buy things for themselves, rather than for friends or family members. They like to see comparisons, detailed product descriptions, customer reviews to help them make purchasing decisions.
The same Ecommerce Platforms infographic says that women have their own way of shopping online and tend to seek a social and comprehensive shopping experience. They shop based more on future needs and are more likely to buy things for friends and family in addition to themselves.
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In fact, the whole process is more social. Women are more likely to ask the opinions of their peers before they buy something new. Rather than buying the first product they like, women tend to be more selective and only buy products that meet all their needs and expectations. Although, they also indulge in impulse buys too.
Compared to men, women are more interested in discounts, deals, and sales. They’re also more likely to share with others when they get an item on sale. Women like to see high quality visuals, discussion forums, and chat features to help them make purchasing decisions.
The millennial generation — roughly those between age 18 and 34 — is the largest living generation in the U.S. The Pew Research Center reports there are 75.4 million millennials. It’s no wonder marketers are falling over themselves trying to reach this demographic.
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Not only are millennials a large cohort, the also spend more money online annually than any other age group, according to BI Intelligence. Despite having lower income compared to older adults, millennials spend around $2000 yearly on ecommerce.
So the million dollar question is: what’s the best way to market to millennials? To start, brands have to be where they are. That means making sure your ecommerce website is mobile responsive. It also means you have to be active on social media, as 59 percent of millennials surveyed by Marketing Sherpa said social media prompts them to begin researching a product or retailer.
They may be the older generation, but don’t count the boomers out! Baby boomers—roughly those between age 55 and 75—account for the majority of American wealth and 70 percent of the country’s disposable income.
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The assumption that baby boomers aren’t technically savvy just doesn’t match the reality. Over a third of adults aged 65 or older use Facebook, per Pew Research Center statistics. Almost two thirds of adults aged 60 to 64 do. They’re researching products online. They account for 25 percent of mobile shoppers. If your business isn’t marketing to boomers online, you’re missing out.
Baby boomers are looking for secure websites, easy navigation, and no nonsense. They also prefer to communicate with companies through email over any other channel. And if you really want to make boomers happy, free shipping and an easy return process go a long way.
As an ecommerce entrepreneur, make sure your online store is ready to serve different genders and generations. Fortunately, there are enterprise ecommerce solutions that offer features like chat, customer reviews, and more so you can reach your target audience effectively. Give your customers what they want, and your business will be successful.