Millennials – born between 1980 and 2000 – aren’t just a niche consumer segment; they’re a generation that makes up 21% of the UK population. They are the 20th century’s last generation and its first truly digital one.
90% of them go online daily. Their social lives, their shopping habits, all happen across online and offline channels. Their digital and real lives are intertwined. Brands that wish to enjoy long-term success need to understand how best to engage, and maintain, their attention.
More millennials use online content to shop than any other generation.
74% of millennials go online to buy their grocery or health & beauty items, or to research these products before making a purchase in store (Nielsen Connected Commerce, 2016).
Don’t think of your sales as online vs offline – for most millennials, online content is part of the purchasing journey, and may have a bigger influence on in-store sales that you realise.
Online success isn’t just about having a snazzy branded website.
Research by Google indicates that only 7% of millennials visit a brand’s website when researching a grocery item. They’re in fact far more likely to use…
Retailer websites (21%): ensure your products look their best on the virtual supermarket shelves. At the moment, standard online product pages don’t leave a lot of room for creativity, but that will soon be changing. Nielsen Brandbank is working with some of the biggest UK retailers right now, to implement a new feature allowing brands to syndicate rich content onto online product pages. It won’t be long until brands can use Nielsen Brandbank Connect to display video content, user reviews, marketing copy, creative photography, recipe suggestions and more.
Search engines (29%): how does your product content fair on search results? A couple of things to consider: regularly adding new online content, as well as refreshing your existing product content, will enhance your rankings. You may also want to consider GS1’s new standard for describing products on the web – GS1 SmartSearch. With GS1 SmartSearch, you can make structured product information available and “readable” for computer software, including search engines and smartphone apps.
Make your content readily available for third parties.
36% of 18-34 year-olds use an app all/some of the time to grocery shop (Nielsen Shopper Trends 2017). It’s important to ensure that shoppers are able to find your products on whichever channels they use. Luckily, if you work with Nielsen Brandbank already, it’s already taken care of; Nielsen Brandbank supplies consistent, high-quality product content to around 60 syndication partners, including independent convenience stores, start-up shopping apps, comparison websites and diet tracking apps.
Is your content mobile-friendly?
40% of millennials research products on their smartphone before committing to a purchase. As well as making sure shoppers can find your products on popular shopping apps, think about how your product images look on a smaller screen. Pack shots have long been the industry norm, but they do not make for easy browsing on portable devices. An increasing number of brands are adjusting their hero images to make key product attributes more prominent. Unilever, for example, has enjoyed an 8% lift in shampoo sales on Amazon Mobile since adopting this new approach. Learn more about mobile-friendly images here.
Allow your customers to share their experiences.
1 in 5 millennials use others’ opinions when choosing a product. They rely less on their own past experiences compared with older generations, and depend heavily on their peers to learn about new products – this includes opinions given on social media. Why don’t you control the story? Encourage/incentivise reviews on your social media platforms and on retailer websites.
An added benefit of a continuous flow of online reviews is that it’ll improve the search engine rankings of your products. Search engines use website crawlers to collect product content that will generate the most relevant and helpful product results for their users – give them fresh content to sort through and your products will stay on top for longer.