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What Do Millennials REALLY Want From Big-Box Retailers?

Jason Dorsey shares his generational insights on what Millennials want from big-box retailers

What do all shoppers, regardless of generation or age, look for in a retail experience? That’s what big-box stores like Wal-Mart are trying to find out.

WalMart Sweet Spot

Even though Wal-Mart stores have been popular destinations for Millennial shoppers for a long time, Jason Dorsey, speaker and Millennial expert for The Center for Generational Kinetics, believes the retailer has entered a critical five-year period that will determine whether they’ll stay relevant to this generation, and all generations in the future.

In a conversation with ArkansasOnline magazine, Dorsey explained that Wal-Mart’s greatest risk comes over the next few years as Millennials enters what he described as the “sweet spot.” Millennials are now moving into their life stage where they’ll shop around before giving their loyalty to one retailer or brand. 

“We’re really getting to the moment where Millennials are assigning their loyalty, they’re creating their patterns, they’re conditioning their kids, everything is going on in the next five years,” said Dorsey. “That’s why this is really the red line for retailers to win us or lose us.”

It’s also important to remember that Millennials are surpassing Baby Boomers in purchasing power, so quality, value, convenience, authenticity and experiences are going to be key in order to win Millennial customers. Companies like Wal-Mart are going to have to start catering to Millennials’ preferences in the ongoing battle to win long-term loyalty. 

“As you make more money or have different choices, you start to change,” Dorsey said. “Look at Amazon. It shows that as much as there is an advantage to having a big location in your neighborhood that has everything you want, at the same time for Millennials, they don’t feel like that’s a necessity.”

Dorsey also said that big-box retailers can overcome the challenges they face with Millennials by continuing to meet their needs, including reaching out to and being part of the community, simplifying shopping, and showing Millennials they can find unique purchases at Wal-Mart. 

“Every other generation, including Gen X and Baby Boomers, are starting to communicate, shop and buy the way the Millennials do,” Dorsey said. “So if you win Millennials, you win them PLUS everybody that was before them…and you have a head start on Gen Z.”

Read the entire article on ArkansasOnline here!

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