Lifelounge Group and Sweeney Research have launched a youth market retail index as part of the latest Urban Market Report, which shows consumers between 16 and 30 years are more influenced by cost, availability and access than what celebrities wear.
“There’s no doubt the lives of celebrities are fascinating, but 16-30s don’t look to replicate,” says Lifelounge Group CEO Dion Appel. “They take elements of inspiration from different sources and combine, and get inspiration from what they see in the media, but they don’t clone. The increasingly reduced time from when a celebrity wears a look and when it appears on the racks, under different brand names, may also play a role in determining where youth attribute their fashion influences.”
The youth market makes up $62 billion dollars of household expenditure and $42.16 billion of this is discretionary. Young people spend an average of $74 on clothing, accessories and footwear each month.
Close to half of 16 to 30 year olds made their last purchase at a major chain store, five per cent up on 2010, according to the index. Independent store and online accounted for around 20 per cent of purchases.
“The resilience of some of the major chain stores is a function of a number of factors. The more progressive chains have the right pricing that competes with global options and they have adapted to the fluidity of fashion throughout the year. What the chains offer is the ability to get it now, to wear tonight – immediacy.
“We’re in an era of absolute transparency and absolute awareness. Youth know the style trends and know how to access it both cost effectively and quickly. They are astute and mercenary shoppers.”
The index also revealed young people mainly use the internet for fashion information.
“Online is primarily important for information and inspiration. As they move through the age band towards 30, the data shows they are more inclined to purchase online. They have more income, greater access to credit and debit cards and are more confident about online purchasing,” Appel explains.