Select Page

GWI GenX Top Brand Discovery Channels Mar2021At a time when brand and product information can be found through an array of channels, Gen X consumers lean towards discovering and researching new brands through search. This is according to a report [download page] from GlobalWebIndex (GWI) which looked at the digital behaviors of Gen Xers.

The global survey of close to 60,000 Gen X (ages 38-56) internet users found that 36% of these consumers use search engines as a method to discover new brands. Search engines edged out ads seen on TV, used by 35% of respondents. And, as proof that word-of-mouth is still effective, one-third (32%) discover new brands through word-of-mouth recommendations.

Websites are also useful channels for discovery for Gen X, with 27% turning to brand/product websites and 26% consulting online retail websites to discover new brands.

When Gen X consumers are ready to research products, search engines also play a prominent role for 55% of respondents. Much like consumers of all ages who rely on consumer reviews for product information, 4 in 10 Gen Xers turn to these for product research. Others research products via brand/product websites (39%), social networks (38%) and price comparison websites (34%).

Finally, when it is time to make a purchase, more than half (54%) of Gen Xers say they are driven to make a purchase online if they are given free delivery, while 4 in 10 (41%) are enticed by coupons and discounts. An easy returns policy (34%), reviews from other customers (33%) and a quick/easy online checkout process (30%) were also cited as drivers for making a purchase online.

Gen X and Social Media

Although Millennials and Gen Z are known for their prolific social media use, Gen X aren’t immune to the lure of this channel. In fact, between 2015 and 2020, this age group increased their average daily use of social media by just short of a half-hour.

Much like Millennials, some of the main reasons Gen X use social media include staying up-to-date with news and current events (36%) and staying in touch with what their friends are doing (32%) as well as to research/find products to buy (28%).

When asked which platforms they had visited in the last month (Q3 2020, excluding China), the majority had spent time on YouTube (85%), Facebook (77%), WhatsApp (61%) and Instagram (57%). Only one-quarter say they had visited TikTok, but this is an increase over the 14% who said the same in Q3 2019.

Device Usage

Per the report, Gen X currently spend an average of 3 hours per day on mobile — that’s more than 50% more time than they spent on mobile in 2015 (1:52). Indeed, they are now more apt to perform tasks such as access, read or send email via mobile (55%) than they are on desktop (48%).

Not only that, but more Gen Xers are using mobile to make purchases online. In North America, Q3 data from 2019 found that 37% of Gen Xers said they had purchased a product online in the last month on mobile. One year later, that percentage had climbed to 46%.

Gen X ownership of PC/laptops has decreased (from 89% in 2015 to 66% in 2020) while, at the same time ownership of smart devices such as Smart TVs are on the rise (36% in 2015 to 43% in 2020).

The full report can be found here.

About the Data: Findings are based on a Q3 2020 survey of almost 60,000 Gen X (ages 38-56) internet users across 46 countries.

Feel Like You're Always Playing Catchup?

Stay ahead of the curve with our free newsletter. It’s fast. It’s factual. And it’s clear

marketing charts logo

Error: Please enter a valid email address

Error: Invalid email

Error: Please enter your first name

Error: Please enter your last name

Error: Please enter a username

Error: Please enter a password

Error: Please confirm your password

Error: Password and password confirmation do not match

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This