Study: How does Facebook fit into millennials’ online shopping habits?


Millennials love fashion, but they aren’t getting their fix (or inspiration) from Facebook, according to a new study by social intelligence company NetBase & Edison Research.

The survey sampled 1,005 women who were social media users, 17 percent of which were between the ages of 18 and 24, the core of the millennial generation. Millenials are “social shoppers.” They talk to their friends about their fashion purchases and are influenced by the input they receive. The percentage of social shoppers in the Millennial age group —28 percent — is almost double the percentage of social shoppers among female social media users of all ages.

Highlights from the study include:

  • Facebook is the most used social platform by millennials but carries the least amount of influence over their buying decisions. Blogs/message boards are most influential, followed by Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter.
  • Visual marketing is big with the millennial generation, particularly in the accessory, special occasion clothing, and casual clothing categories. Fifty-eight percent of millennials look to Pinterest for inspiration in at least one fashion category.
  • 83 percent of 18 to 24 year olds say they consult at least one social platform before purchasing in at least one fashion category;
  • 24 percent of female millennials are willing to pay a higher price to be the first to have a new product, compared to 15 percent of all female social media users; and
  • Fashion blogs and message boards are sources of influence for more Millennials than Facebook is across all the fashion categories studied. Sixty-three percent of millennials look to fashion blogs and message boards for inspiration in at least one fashion category, compared to 54 percent who look at Facebook for inspiration.

What this means for brands is that they need to know their target consumers. Facebook is still important among millennials, but brands should not rest their futures solely on the platform. Pinterest and Instagram should no longer be written off and are a good investment into the realm of visual marketing as it begins to play a larger role in marketing as a whole. Marketing successfully to the most socially influenced and socially connected generation ever matters now more than ever for brands.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

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