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Latest Shullman Affluence Study

Millennials prefer in-store buying to shopping online.

Millionaires in general prefer to shop at Amazon, but by subgroup, Gen X-ers prefer Wal-Mart.

That’s the latest result from the Shullman Research Center’s monthly survey of affluent shoppers and their buying preferences. While 62 percent of millionaires in general tend to gravitate toward Amazon, followed by 54 percent at Wal-Mart and 49 percent at Target, Gen X-ers prefer Wal-Mart to Amazon at a rate of 49 percent to 41 percent. Amazon is tops among millionaire Millennials at 64 percent, with Macy’s a strong second at 57 percent.

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Interestingly, Gen X-ers take the lead buying online at 65 percent. Millennials, often viewed as the leaders among the digital crowd, actually preferred in-store buying at 52 percent compared with shopping online at 39 percent. The survey said that both Millennials and Boomers, at 46 percent and 48 percent respectively, are uncomfortable making a purchase on a smartphone.

Among the top stores millionaires shopped at in the past 12 months, Amazon topped the list at 62 percent, followed by Wal-Mart at 54 percent and Target at 49 percent. Macy’s was fifth at 37 percent overall, while J.C. Penney and Kohl’s ranked 10th and 11th, respectively, at 29 percent each. Apple and Sears tied at 25 percent, ranking 13 and 14, respectively.  Nordstrom ranked 16 with 22 percent, with Banana Republic in 18th place and 22 percent of the shoppers surveyed. Coach and Jos. A. Bank Clothiers were 19th and 20th, at 15 percent. Neiman Marcus was 24th at 13 percent. To be sure, half of the millionaires surveyed were Boomers, which likely drove the rankings for the top three placements. Most notable was the ranking of Macy’s and Sears, in which those placements were driven by survey responses from Millennials, not Boomers.

As for researching online, millionaire Millennials were mostly likely to compare products online, while Boomers’ preference was to visit stores and Gen X-ers most likely to call a store for information. Once the research was done, Gen X-ers were most likely to buy online, while Millennials and Boomers preferred to head to a store to make their purchase.