Millennials are the next generation of consumers.
But the young generation's shopping habits could present some huge issues for retailers, industry expert Robin Lewis writes on his blog.
"Every store in the world is literally in millennials’ pockets; they can hang out with their friends, sip lattes and shop online—all at the same time," Lewis writes.
As a result of the massive selection, many millennials are indecisive about purchases.
About 50% of millennials browse and research items they never intend on buying, Lewis writes, citing a study by The Intelligence Group.
The generation is also driving a decline in mall traffic.
"Why spend all the time and effort traveling to, and traipsing through, big, old, largely boring malls with a limited number of cool stores that don’t offer any great experience in the first place?" Lewis asks.
Millennials are also insistent on high-quality products that are different from what their friends wear, which is bad news for traditional retail brands.
The young generation also has higher ethical standards than their parents.
"There’s a growing social justice challenge for brands: 32% of Millennials have stopped buying from companies that have social practices they find unacceptable," Lewis says.
In the future, retailers should alter merchandising strategies to include trading and bartering rather than traditional shopping. Lewis cites Rent the Runway as an example of a brand that has successfully done this.
Lewis also stresses that retailers are going to have to work harder to make shopping an entertaining experience.
"If it’s not fun, not meaningful, and not memorable, there really is no reason for consumers to shop there," Lewis writes.
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