Millennials Embrace High-Low Budgeting

High-Low BudgetingMillennials are savvy shoppers and are often smart about their spending. They research items before they buy them, get their friends’ opinions, find the best deals, and search for discounts or coupons. However, they’re also interested in luxury items and to make such purchases, they embrace high-low budgeting. This means, they’ll splurge on items they really want, such as a tablet or handbag, but they’ll shop at more affordable stores, make their own items, and prepare their own food in an effort to cut back on spending. According to Ypulse research among 1200 14-34-year-olds, 51% say they’re sometimes willing to splurge on luxury items, but they always buy inexpensive items to balance it out. We’ve been noticing this behavior which reflects how resourceful Millennials are and how they’ve adapted in today’s economy.

For example, technology is of huge importance to Millennials and they’re willing to buy the latest devices, which they consider crucial for entertainment and communication purposes. They’re also willing to splurge on some staple clothing items that they know they’ll get plenty of use out of. They’ll even buy designer items on occasion, however, they’re highly aware of how to do so in the most affordable way. They embrace flash deal sites like HauteLook and Gilt Groupe, where they can buy such items for less. They also pay close attention to when stores offer free or reduced shipping and when coupon codes are available. In fact, 43% say they won’t buy an item online if they can't get free shipping.

Additionally, they’re interested in designer collaborations for less such as Target for Neiman Marcus, which enable them to have a taste of luxury in an affordable way. They’ll also buy inexpensive basics at mass merchandisers such as Target or Walmart, trendy items at fast…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“As a graphic designer, without the arts being available to me in school I would have been lost as a child and where to take my career path. The fact that schools are cutting art programs is heartbreaking.”—Female, 24, NJ

Applebee’s is putting down the sriracha and giving up on trying to appeal to Millennials. The brand has decided their newer menu items—like a “triple pork bonanza” sandwich—and attempt at a “modern bar and grill” reinvention has “alienate[d]” Boomers and Gen Xers. They’re shutting down more than 130 restaurants and bringing back initiatives from before their attempted “pendulum swing towards millennials,” all-you-can-eat specials and 2-for-$20 deals. Other brands are creating new spin off chains to appeal to fast-casual lovingMillennials, that “[lack] the associated baggage of the old.” (Inc, NPR)

Adults-only ball pits, bouncy houses, and giant slides are sweeping the U.K. Millennials seeking a break from adulthood are flocking to places like Wacky World’s “massive bouncy-castle obstacle course,” which started out as a children’s event. The founder received so many requests that now every event has an 18-and-over slot, and has expanded to 19 cities. This “trend for arrested development activities” is caused by nostalgia, but the influx of marketing and branding leveraging the emotion could be popularizing these playgrounds for adults. (The Guardian)

Facebook is responding to the trend of asking for birthday charitable donations by integrating it right into the platform. Users in the U.S. can now trade in all the “HBD”s they get on Facebook for donations to the cause of their choice: well-wishers will be notified of the birthday along with the selected non-profit, and get the chance to donate. Facebook will ask users which charity they wish to dedicate their day to two weeks in advance, allowing them to choose from 750,000 organizations. (TNW)

Appear Here is the Airbnb of pop-up shops, giving brands their perfect temporary store for the new era of retail. The company finds short term retail space, and has worked with big-name brands like Nike and Net-a-Porter to open “experimental activations” or “test new products.” As brick-and-mortar continues to suffer and long-term stores close, Appear Here says physical retail is still needed, but to “tell a story.” The pop-up industry was valued at $50 billion in 2015, and provides a more low-risk, flexible option to avoid the retail wasteland. (Glossy)

Millennials & Gen Z are turning a profit online and on mobile by re-selling their retail. Thredup, Poshmark, and Depop are just a few of the most popular brands cashing in on the resale economy’s $18 billion market, and some shoppers say they are making $300 a week on the platforms. Some are also using social to sell, often in conjunction with apps or sites, including Snapchat, Facebook Groups, and Instagram. College students on a budget are reportedly especially drawn to resale, thanks to convenience, value, and access to luxury at a lower price. (FN)

“Adult means being entirely independent. I pay my own bills, make all decisions in my life, and feel very in control.”—Male, 20, NY

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