Millennials, known to prefer value and unwillingness to compromise on quality, shopped Wal-Mart more than any other retailer in the past 90 days according to a recent report by Nielsen.
The Nielsen report indicates that 75.5% of Millennial consumers shopped at Wal-Mart in the last three-month period. Target garnered 55.6% of the demographic’s shopping trips and Amazon registered 46.8% of their retail business.
The rest of the “Top 10 Retailer” list includes: Dollar Tree 38.6%; Kohl’s 30.9%; Dollar General 30.2%; JCPenney 26.4%; Family Dollar 25.6%; Best Buy 25.5%; and Macy’s 22.9%.
Nielsen said Millennials place a premium on authenticity, from the products they buy to their interactions with brands.
“In particular, Millennials value goods that are handmade and locally produced. They want to know the story, history and heritage behind the items they purchase. And they demand a connected, multi-channel shopping experience,” the report stated.
Walmart U.S. executives told the media in June that the retailer was doing well with the Millennials, more so than Generation X and even more than the coveted Boomer generation that helped fuel the retailer’s growth demand for the past 30 years.
“This kind of shocks a lot of people, including inside the company,” Wal-Mart Chief Marketing Officer Stephen Quinn told the media in June during the retailer’s shareholder week meetings. He also said Wal-Mart’s value pricing is a big draw for cash-strapped Millennials carrying more student loan debt than previous generations.
Nielsen noted that economic struggles are a reality for many Millennials, but one subset is thriving. Roughly 27% of this generation earns more than $75,000 per year, and 15% of this group earn more than $100,000.
Researchers agree that Millennials are savvy shoppers and 42% of them check at least four sources when trying to decide on a purchase, according to Edelman Digital. Roughly a third make purchases only when they have a coupon or promotional code. About 40% buy previously used items online to save money, according to the Nielsen report. Despite having more money to spend, upscale Millennials are deal-lovers, with 43% using coupons at least once a month.
Nielsen said retailers may entice Millennials to buy with deals and coupons, especially promotions that feel exclusive and customized to them. Wal-Mart apparently achieves this through everyday low prices, rollbacks and price matching its competitors. Target achieves this through its Redcard loyalty program.
The report also noted that higher income Millennials (67.8%) also shopped Wal-Mart more than any other retailer in the same three-month period. But Target also resonates well with this cohort with a close second at 65.2% and Amazon came in third at 59.7%.
“Target has focused on capturing the upscale Millennial market through its partnerships with fashion designers and the affordable, yet chic Threshold home accessory line,” the report stated.
Other retailers doing well with higher-income Millennials include: Kohl’s 39.1%; Best Buy 31.8%; Macy’s 30/3%; Dollar Tree 29.6%; Costco 29.6%; JCPenney 20.3%; and Old Navy 24.4%.
Nielsen said Millennials have reached critical mass with cumulative annual spending at $200 billion and more than ever retailers of all sizes are vying for this business.