co Do You Know Your "Empty Nesters"? |

There have been interesting changes in many of the demographics marketers are accustomed to targeting. Recently, Retail TouchPoints looked at the way that most “empty nesters” consult the web, browse, and buy via mobile. A study was done on shoppers born between the years 1946 and 1964 who do not have children living at home. This is what was discovered:

  • 82% would rather browse online than in-store
  • 65% use smartphones to look up product information
  • 64% have made purchases using their tablets
  • 71% do NOT think they are “behind the times”
  • 68% consider themselves independent thinkers
  • 90% start the path to purchase using a search engine
  • 85% trust third-person product reviews from major retail sites
  • 45% are more likely to purchase based on a trusted blogger’s recommendation

Interesting numbers, right? This demographic clearly do not think of themselves as poking along in the dust of modern progress. Instead, they are embracing progress and using it to buy what they want.

The Takeaway For Marketers

I don’t think it’s safe to assume you know your targeted demographics. If you aren’t staying current by analyzing the data, you might be pitching your message to people who aren’t listening. We are seeing our audience change as they respond to the opportunities found online. It’s pretty exciting!

But you know that if the demographic once thought to be least comfortable with online activity is showing those numbers for cybershopping, there are good reasons to make sure your business is the one they find when they search for what you offer.

The vast majority of this group start their shopping by using a search engine. Most of them use their smartphones to look up product information. That means responsive website design & development and mobile marketing are key to reaching this group — and they are not the digital natives who rely on their phones for daily functions.

It might be safe to assume that even though a person in this demographic uses their phone to look up things online, they don’t necessarily want to go through a lot of clicks to get to the information they want. Your responsive site needs to be responsive to the people who are apt to be using it.

If you can get feedback from your current customers about features they wish your site had, that would be a good place to start. It would indicate who is using your site, who is frustrated with your site, and what you could do to reach them effectively with new marketing messages.