How Generation X Consumers Shop for Home Goods and Tips for Capturing Their Business

Gen Xers have plenty of buying power. Here's how to effectively reach them in-store and on mobile.

Alison Martin
04/17/2019
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Adobestock couple in furniture store
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Generation X may be described as the middle child, caught between Baby Boomers and Millennials, but this generation has plenty of buying power and some unique needs. 

For example, Generation Xers — defined by the Pew Research Center as being born between the mid-1960s and early 1980s —are still raising children, and many are getting ready to send their kids to college in the next few years. They survived the Great Recession, but many saw their careers take a hit. One of their biggest concerns? Having enough saved for retirement. According to Allianz Life, the median retirement amount that Generation Xers have saved is just $35,000.

All that aside, Generation X still represents a powerful consumer base — if you know how to tap into their needs. Be it in-store or online, here’s how to woo Generation X. 

In-Stores

How Generation X Shops

  • Produces 31 percent of U.S. income despite making up just 25 percent of the total population, yet more conservative in their purchases.
  • More likely to be skeptical of flashy marketing messages than other generations.
  • Prefers to research products thoroughly before making a decision.

Source: SalesFloor

How to Serve Generation Xers in Your Store

  • Offer promotions for loyalty. Given their affinity for supporting brands they like, your showroom or store should be returning that loyalty with promotional offers. Think about ways to reward Generation Xers for spending a certain amount of money with you.
  • Emphasize quality and longevity of products: Generation Xers aren’t necessarily close to retirement — but they’re not too far off either. Emphasizing the durability and quality of products and how those products will transition as the Gen Xer’s life eventually changes — becoming empty nesters, retirement — adds value to the product and justifies an investment.
  • Promote the benefits of smart furniture: Generation Xers need furniture that will adapt to their changing lifestyles: kids growing up, larger home purchases or in-laws moving in. Adaptable, multifunctional or technologically integrated furniture — what we call smart — fits Generation Xers’ lifestyles today and for the future.

 

Mobile Matters

Adobestock man on phone
(Photo: anatoliycherkas)

 

  • Generation X is second in global mobile usage.
  • Generation Xers also spent 80 hours per month in 2016 accessing mobile apps via smartphones.
  • 17.3 hours per month in 2016 accessing apps via tablets.
  • 72 percent use the internet to research businesses.

Source: Statista, RevLocal

Think Generation X doesn’t care about your website or digital presence? Odds are, they’re using their mobile devices first to research businesses before buying, and as previously stated, this generation takes product research seriously. As we reported back in May last year, Generation X consults YouTube for information, and they spend nearly seven hours per week on Facebook alone.

If your website isn’t optimized for mobile search, you may be missing out on business from Generation X. Here’s how to get your website in tip-top shape for mobile users.

Mobilize Your Website in 3 Steps

1. Check to see if your website is responsively designed. Open your website on your phone. Does it adjust to fit the screen size or do you have to zoom in to see anything? If you have to zoom in, your website is not responsively designed, and you’re losing money and page views because Google pushes unresponsive websites down in search results. Contact a website designer.

2. Check your website’s speed. Last summer, Google announced that loading times would factor into its rankings. The slower the site, the farther down it would be in search results. To check, go to www.developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/.

3. Test your website’s mobile usability. How easy is it for people to navigate your website on their phones? Can users easily search your site and find product pages without too much issue? Ask a friend or family member to access a certain page of your website. If they can find it without much work, your site is likely in good shape.

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