Millennial Loyalty Is Up for Grabs, Are You Ready to Capture It?

As the dust settles on 2016, we’re seeing the elusive millennial shoppers slowly reshaping their buying habits and starting to exhibit similar buying patterns to their predecessor, Generation X. And it’s just in time for today’s retail grocers…

Why the Delay?

The millennial generation (born 1977-1994) has experienced a surplus of consumer tech innovation that opened up an entirely new world of consumerism that other generations never experienced. These new services provide lavish lifestyles that, although exciting and convenient, are also expensive. As many millennials are approaching their 30s they’re starting to plan for the future: Some are getting married, having kids or just realizing how much of their budgets go to having tacos delivered to their door night after night. In other words, as these budgets are being formed, now’s the time for retail grocers to lock down millennial shoppers and earn their loyalty. And if you still don’t think millennials are changing their ways, look at the unicorn startup Blue Apron who are giving away $30 dollars of free meals just to sign up.

The New Hybrid Grocer

Grocery stores have a real advantage over most retailers. According to Statista, about 50% of grocery shoppers are “very loyal” to their supermarkets, as compared to 21% who are “very loyal” to specialty food stores. So if you can get a millennial shopping at your store, your chances of having that customer as a regular for a long time are pretty good.

In fact, post-recession, more than a third of millennials were willing to cut their spending on eating out but only 8% were willing to cut their spending at grocery stores, according to research by Retale, a location-based mobile, and digital marketing company.

Adding Digital to the Shopping Experience?

It’s no secret that millennials rely heavily on tech, and they do their research. They rely on their mobile phones to show them the best options for what they’re looking for within a given radius. And because they like having the option to do that research, any store that wants to appeal to a millennial audience better have an attractive website, a robust mobile app and maybe some gamification tossed in.

An App is More than a Mobile Website

What are they looking for on those apps? They’re looking for the best prices and an easy to use interface. 30% of millennials (and more than 40% of millennial moms) choose the supermarket with consistently low prices, which may not bode well for those predicting all prices will be flexible in the future. Data shows that about 50% of millennials use supermarket apps in-store for clipping coupons and finding weekly ads while shopping. So it helps to include competitive data around your competitors’ prices in weekly ads and at the POS to confirm they’ve made the right store choice.

40% of millennials would like more ads and coupon offers sent to their phones when they enter the store.

Does Your Marketing Mix Fit the Millennial Budget?

After all those years catering to baby boomers, millennials now outnumber them. So now’s a good time to factor in the way millennials shop to become the grocer of choice for the millennial shopper.

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Seth Nagle, Senior Marketing Manager at RW3 Technologies understands the power of innovation but also its limitations. Attending Salve Regina in New England, starting his career in Silicon Valley, and now living in Austin, Texas; Seth provides a unique tech perspective to a complex CPG and Retail Grocery Industry that is in constant disruption.

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