Targeting millennials for ecommerce

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Dropshipping to millennials could be a bigger deal than you think for successful ecommerce. This generation of consumers has technology and internet skills the first of its kind, leading the way for their younger cohort, Gen Z.

Who are millennials?

Millennials, otherwise known as Generation Y, represent those born between 1981 and 1996 (aged 41-26 in 2022). Around the world, these are the numbers of millennials, as of WeForum, 2021:

  • Asia, 1.1 billion (24% of the region's population)
  • Africa, 278 million (21%)
  • Latin America and the Caribbean, 155 million (23%)
  • Europe, 148 million (20%)
  • North America, 76 million (21%)
  • Oceania, 9 million (22%)
  • Why market to millennials?

    Millennials are a prime market for dropshippers. Generation Y grew into the age of the internet and the millennium, making them the first digital natives. Savvy with today's tech and now in the professional stage of their lives with credible careers, millennials have some serious buying power.

    1.8 billion millennials

    Around the world, there are 1.8 billion millennials, making up 23% of the global population, according to WeForum, 2021. That's a large percentage of buyers to market to.

    Almost 4 hours per day spent online via mobile

    Statista, 2021, states that worldwide, millennials aged 25-34 spend on average 3 hours and 45 minutes a day on their phones to use the internet. Online advertising will go far when targeting millennials given the large proportion of time they spend on social media and the internet.

    54% bought a product they discovered on social media

    More than half of North America's millennials made a purchase after being tempted by a product on social channels. Millennials are very comfortable making the most of online convenience, says Jungle Scout, 2021, as almost half also shop online for groceries.

    Nearly 50% of managers and professionals are millennials

    In Australia, millennials have well-paid jobs and are saving more. The Guardian in 2021 reported that millennials born in the 90s save around 13% of their income.

    How to advertise to millennials

    Millennials are interesting as a marketing audience as they were the first generation to grow up with digital media. However, they are very sceptical of businesses and advertising. Choosing an advertising campaign that is creative instead will reap the rewards. Millennials appreciate unique, funny, and captivating content for clever advertising. Most of all, be authentic.

    Less sales talk

    Dropshipping to millennials requires some stealth. This generation is tired of old-school advertising and boring pushy sales talk. Research from the University of Northampton in 2019 found that both UK and US millennials distrust advertising, agreeing that "advertisements should be more realistic."

    Make them laugh

    A study by Clever Real Estate in 2019 found that 43% of 1,100 Americans engage with humorous advertising. Similarly, an article in the Journal of Global Scholars of Marketing Science, 2021, advised that advertising should be short, and include video, humour, music, and social media influencers to get the most positive engagement with millennials.

    Ethical consumers

    In an article in the Journal of Consumer Behaviour, 2021, millennials are argued to care more about responsible corporations than previous generations. The small survey found that European millennials are concerned about sustainability, company morals, and authenticity.

    Influencer marketing

    The American Marketing Association reports that 54% of millennials are more likely to make a purchase based on influencer advertising. Recommendations by social media celebrities on Instagram and YouTube are effective as a less obtrusive form of product promotion. As millennials continue to distrust traditional adverts, they are very responsive to this form of marketing.

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