Millennial consumers are underemployed, living at home with their parents and struggling to pay off crippling student loans, so they have no disposable income to speak of—right? Wrong, according to a study conducted by AOL and reported by eMarketer. While Millennials may not have the spending power of, say, upscale Baby Boomers, they also make way more impulse purchases than the average consumer.
Their near-constant use of technology plays a big role in influencing Millennial shoppers to buy spontaneously, the study found. Some 60 percent of 18-to-34-year-olds in the survey say they go online to look at products to buy almost every day—even when they have no immediate plans to buy something. Just 46 percent of consumers overall do the same.
As a result of their frequent online browsing, more than 50 percent of Millennials admit they often find themselves buying products they didn’t plan to buy. In comparison, only 40 percent of Generation X consumers and 30 percent of Baby Boomers say they make frequent unplanned purchases.
The study reports that although shoppers browsing the Internet usually have a specific brand in mind when they start to browse, there is still a good chance you can convert shoppers to your brand by reaching them during their browsing. Nearly one-fourth of respondents admitted they often decide on a brand while doing online research.
So how can you convert these Millennial browsers to make an impulse buy from your ecommerce site?
- Focus on inexpensive items. These products are more likely to be impulse purchases, typically made the same day. They also appeal to Millennials’ lower budgets.
- Use keywords relevant to your product or service and to Millennial users.
- Take out pay-per-click ads using relevant keywords.
- Keep mobile in mind. Make sure your links lead to landing pages that are mobile-optimized, since Millennials in particular are likely to browse on tablets or smartphones when they’re bored.
- Make it easy to buy. Minimize the steps involved in the checkout process. If it takes too long, consumers may have time to reconsider the purchase and decide that it’s not worth the time or expense.
- Market your products as small treats or rewards so that shoppers won’t feel guilty about buying. Also emphasize the cool factor or novelty of the item—Millennials like to feel like they’re on the cutting edge and discovering products their peers don’t know about yet.
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