Study Provides Canadian Retailers Insight into Millennials

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A new study by yconic provides insight into Canadian Millennials, including how they spend their money. Called ‘The Millennial Shopper: More Social and Educated than Ever Before‘, the study describes the Millennial shopping process and how research, social media and experiences are key. 

The study describes Millennials as seeking ‘rich experiences’ that may include luxurious shopping, food and travel. Although many Millennials have debt, they are also earning money and spending it rather than saving it. A considerable number of Millennials also still live with their parents, providing discretionary income. 

The study says that Millennials (aged 19 to 34) make up about 30%, or 9.5 million Canadians. Their income is estimated at a whopping $237 billion, being about 21% of all income earned in Canada. Millennial spending grew substantially between 2009 and 2011 — spending on luxury fashion increasing by 33%, travel spending increased 74%, and fine dining spending increased by 102%. Those numbers are remarkable, given the short time period. 

Millennials now spend more than previous generations, according to the study. They’re also the first generation to have grown up through the information age, which is reflected in their shopping habits. The study describes Millennials as generally being brand loyal, though it notes considerable effort is required to gain and maintain that loyalty. Exceptional quality, price and authentic, positive brand experiences are therefore key. 

The study goes on to describe how Millennials learn about new products. Friends, family and advertising still play key roles, though the study notes that social media is now a very important component to increasing brand awareness among Canadian Millennials. 

The study goes into depth, discussing the steps Millennials take when purchasing, including discovery, pre-purchase, purchase, and post-purchase behaviour. The study then goes into detail about how technology and research influence decision making.

The study concludes with advice and other information on how brands can capture the Millennial dollar, and how to keep customers loyal post-purchase. The study has considerable detail not discussed above, and the full PDF can be downloaded here.  

About yconic: 

yconic operates Canada’s largest student help platform and youth-focused market research panel. yconic helps brands and agencies better understand and build meaningful connections with youth by offering Market Research and Insights, Digital Marketing and Talent Solutions. For more information, visit

Article Author

Craig Patterson
Craig Patterson
Located in Toronto, Craig is the Publisher & CEO of Retail Insider Media Ltd. He is also a retail analyst and consultant, Advisor at the University of Alberta School Centre for Cities and Communities in Edmonton, former lawyer and a public speaker. He has studied the Canadian retail landscape for over 25 years and he holds Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws Degrees.

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