How Millionaires Shop: Millennials and Baby Boomers Share Many Similarities

May 29, 2014

Shullman-Millionaires-Shopping-Preferences-by-Generation-May2014In a new study of how millionaires shop, the Shullman Research Center finds that Millennials (18-33) and Baby Boomers (49-67) share many similarities, with Gen Xers (34-48) the odd ones out. According to the survey of almost 500 respondents with a net worth of at least $1 million, 52% of Millennials and 53% of Boomers prefer to make purchases of products and services of interest to them at a store, compared to just one-quarter of Gen Xers. And while almost half of Millennials and Boomers say they aren’t comfortable making purchases on a smartphone, just 1 in 8 Gen Xers concur. Similarly, roughly one-half of Millennials (46%) and Boomers (54%) are uncomfortable making purchases through personal shoppers, a sentiment shared by just 29% of Gen Xers.

The similarities between Millennials and Boomers also extend to other shopping preferences: Amazon emerges as the leading store shopped in the prior 12 months, by about two-thirds Millennials (64%) and Boomers (67%), but comes second to Walmart among Gen Xers, of whom just 41% shopped at Amazon.

Of course, there are also plenty of differences to be found between the younger and older generations. For example, 90% of Millennial millionaires prefer to conduct their shopping research online, versus three-quarters of Boomers. Boomers, by contrast, are far more likely to prefer conducting their research in-store (23% vs. 4%). And – somewhat surprisingly – Millennials (35%) are twice as likely as Boomers (18%) to be uncomfortable making purchases using a tablet.

A report released earlier this year by the Shullman Research Center found significant generational differences in how millionaires approach their finances, as well as their optimism about the US economy.

About the Data: The insights and data presented in the report are based on the Shullman Luxury, Affluence and Wealth Pulse, Fall 2013 Preview Wave, conducted online between August 20 and August 27, 2013, among adults age 18 or older.

Five sample groups were surveyed: in addition to a representative national sample of adults (500 interviews), four household-income segments were targeted to obtain the following number of completed interviews:

  • $75,000 to $149,999: 256 interviews
  • $150,000 to $249,999: 253 interviews
  • $250,000 to $499,999: 253 interviews
  • $500,000 or more: 251 interviews

Additionally, 496 respondents ”” 263 men and 233 women ”” in the survey wave reported that their net worth was $1,000,000 or more and constitute the basis for the report.

Results were weighted to bring the income groups, as well as other key demographics, into line with estimates from the March 2012 Current Population Survey as reported by the Bureau of the Census in the fall of 2012.

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