What Makes Teen Shoppers Brand-Loyal

Among the cohort, great prices create loyalty more than any other factor

Author: Rimma Kats

January 4, 2018

Teens don’t necessarily have the same spending habits as older cohorts. For one, many don’t even have a job. But marketers still need to pay attention to this group—and here’s why.

A November 2017 survey from technology company Inmar queried 1,156 US teen internet users ages 13 to 19, with the sample skewing female. It found that teens, like many shoppers, are always on the lookout for a good deal.

In fact, many teens were influenced to shop at their regular store by low prices, sales and discounts, as well as high-quality products.

And that’s also what keeps them loyal. Two-thirds of respondents said a great price was one of the characteristics that made them loyal to brands and retailers, and almost as many said high-quality items or services did the same. Getting exclusive benefits also bolstered loyalty among a sizable minority of those polled.

Mobile is another factor that influences how this group shops. According to Inmar, more than half (56%) of teens use their digital devices for online shopping. And separate studies have shown similar sentiments as well.

Take a February 2017 survey from Euclid Analytics, which found that respondents ages 16 to 21—who are also referred to as Gen Z—use their smartphones in-store more than the average shopper. Many of those surveyed said they use their phones to take pictures of products for future reference, to talk and chat with friends and family about their purchases, and, more commonly, to compare prices.

eMarketer estimates that 81.1% of 12- to 17-year-olds in the US will be smartphone users this year. That puts them slightly ahead of the total adult population, for which smartphone penetration is expected to be 79.7% this year.