Payments Blog

Online Spending Habits of Generation Z vs. Millennials (Mobile)

Last week we went through some online spending habits of Generation Z, but let’s take a deeper look into how they shop and what sets them apart from Millennials and past generations.

Merchants are still trying to figure out the shopping habits of Millennials, but now Generation Z is here, and as mentioned in our last blog, they are going to make up a massive group of consumers – a group well worth focusing on. This upcoming consumer generation is the first generation to be a truly mobile-first generation. Millennials look to mobile because of its speed, whereas Generation Z uses mobile for a different reason. Mobile shopping is personal to Gen Z’s needs - they can shop wherever and whenever they want at the touch of their finger.

Here are some interesting stats that show how these two generations shop:

  • 75% of teens (Gen Z) access internet/shopping sites from mobile devices
  • 79% teen females (Gen Z) shop online and 75% of teen males shop online
  • 50% of the teens prefer to shop only online, avoiding physical stores
  • Generation Z uses five screens on average in a day: smartphone, TV, laptop, desktop, and tablet, whereas Millennials use three screens on average per day.
  • The average Millennial consumer spends $2,000 per year on digital retail sales
  • 54% of Millennials said that shopping apps were easier to use than online sites
  • In any 6 month period, it is projected that more than half of consumers who make an online purchase will be Millennials.


The common trend shows that in order to reach out to Generation Z, your best channel is mobile. While technology is all that Generation Z has ever known and they are comfortable with it, Millennials were not raised from the start with technology but have become accustomed to it. For example, smartphones were not around for Millennials as children as they are for Generation Z. Generation Z consumers are looking for the next best thing in technology and looking to drive collaboration and change. As a merchant, having a mobile-friendly website is key to attracting, converting and keeping both groups of these young consumers.

Cardinal makes mobile commerce, mobile banking and mobile marketing fast and easy for merchants and financial institutions. Cardinal’s solution, CardinalMAX, allows you to accept mobile payments, send marketing messages and offer mobile banking. MAX gives your card-holders a seamless mobile experience from start to finish.

Stay tuned for next week’s blog for a good alternative method of payment to use on your checkout page to reach this young demographic - both Millennials and Generation Z. With your One Connection to Cardinal we can FutureProof™ your business.



Posted by Michael Roche

Michael Roche is the Vice President of Consumer Authentication where he focuses on developing and strengthening relationships with enterprise partners in order to provide them with eCommerce solutions tailored to their needs.Mike is our Consumer Authentication expert. He is instrumental in soliciting feedback from Customers to improve current products and shape new product development.

Mike has been with CardinalCommerce since 2003, serving in many different capacities throughout his tenure. He is the founding member of the sales force and merchant support teams, where he has had the opportunity to contribute and lead the development of all of Cardinal’s Consumer Authentication programs, while working very closely with both Visa and MasterCard on their design and deployment of 3-D Secure. Mike is a member of The Payments Committee with the Merchant Risk Council (MRC) and is active with other industry organizations such as the Direct Response Forum, Electronic Transaction Association, Secure Remote Payments Council, and Cardholder Not Present Forum. He is frequently invited to speak at industry events on various payments- and fraud-related topics, in the U.S. and internationally.

Mike holds two Bachelor of Arts degrees with distinction from John Carroll University and is pursuing his MBA from Case Western Reserve University. In his free time, Mike enjoys fishing on Lake Erie, is a history fanatic and also is a published author. His greatest pride and accomplishments are his daughter Theodora, his son Macklin and beautiful wife Rebecca.

Find me on: LinkedIn

Aug 23, 2016 8:30:00 AM

Topics: CardinalCommerce, Affirm, millennials, generation z, eCommerce

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