Bucking the Male Shopper Stereotype

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Bucking the Male Shopper Stereotype


Despite the stereotype to the contrary, not only do men shop, but they take pride in being smart shoppers, according to New York-based WSL Strategic Retail.

An unprecedented 63 percent of men say they actively look for sales in-store and 53 percent admit to regularly using coupons, a finding revealed in WSL’s “How America Shops Men & Shopping” report, which also identifies millennial men as the most tech-savvy shoppers – 67 percent use their mobile phones to shop, followed by 52 percent of generation X’ers and 29 percent of boomers.

“There are a number of assumptions associated with the way men shop, and the reality is that many of them are just not true,” said Wendy Liebmann, CEO of WSL. “Men are consistently more optimistic about their finances than women, which makes them more inclined to spend than their female counterparts, even in a shaky economy. What’s different about today’s man is that he is more engaged and shopping smarter than retailers may be giving him credit for.“

Candace Corlett, president, noted the importance of recognizing that “younger men are driving this evolution in shopping behavior.”

“The Gen X and Millennial men grew up with significantly more places to shop and tools to choose from, and they are part of a culture that shares shopping responsibilities with their working wives,” Corlett added. “With these groups now representing more than half of the male population, brands and retailers need to make sure they know how these men shop.”

Additional findings from WSL’s report:

Men ask for help. In fact, more men than women will look for help from a sales associate in just about every category, including home products (25 percent, versus 18 percent women); baby products (25 percent, versus 12 percent women); and beauty products (14 percent, versus 9 percent women).

Men want the benefits of membership. Despite the belief that men won’t bother with rewards programs, 79 percent belong to a frequent shopper program – almost as many as women (89 percent) – and 73 percent of the men surveyed say they receive email alerts for shopping, versus 82 percent of women.

Men rely on product reviews. Sixty-eight percent of men feel they are better informed after reading online product reviews, and 58 percent say they are ready to make a purchase after reading reviews, almost as high as women.

The “How America Shops Men & Shopping” study was conducted as a nationwide online survey of 740 men and 780 women shoppers.