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May 15, 2017
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Harris Poll finds millennials favor off-price retailers, mainstream department stores over luxury

Published
May 15, 2017

According to The Harris Poll 2017 EquiTrend Study, millennials are breathing life into retail brands. Compared to older generations, millennials award higher brand equity to all retail categories, including department stores, off-price retailers, luxury department stores, sporting goods, electronics, and footwear, while older generations prefer hardware and home stores more than millennials prefer them.


Harris Poll named Nordstrom the Luxury Department Brand of the Year for the second consecutive year - Nordstrom

 
Sporting goods brand equity is 7.7 points higher among millennials compared to baby boomers, and luxury department stores, electronics stores, off-price retailers, footwear and department stores are 5.6 points higher, 5.7 points, 4.9 points, 4 points and 3.8 points, respectively.
 
Luxury department stores and sporting goods stores are flat among consumers overall, and off-price is the only retail category to increase from last year. The Harris Poll data also found that the luxury designation does not benefit department stores as much as it benefits automotive and hotels, and mainstream department stores post higher equity scores when compared to luxury department stores.

Nordstrom emerged as the Luxury Department Brand of the Year for the second year in a row, but was impacted by the Ivanka Trump controversy. The retailer’s brand equity fell by 4 points.
 
Kohl’s was named Department Store Brand of the Year after losing the title to Macy’s. The retailer held the distinction from 2012 to 2015 prior to the win by Macy’s.
 
In addition, TJ Maxx was the Off-Price Retailer Brand of the Year and Best Buy was Electronics Store Brand of the Year both for the second consecutive year, DSW is Footwear Store Brand of the Year for the fourth consecutive year, and Dick’s Sporting Goods reclaims its Sporting Goods Store Brand of the Year honor from Cabela's.
 
"Strong brand equity – including greater familiarity with your brand, a greater bond with your brand, a better-perceived quality of your brand – translates into a larger share of wallet," said Joan Sinopoli, VP of Brand Solutions at The Harris Poll.

"It's no secret that the retail industry is undergoing tremendous challenges, but knowing how to best cater to different customer segments is critical. As a result, several retailers are working to revamp their stores into 'millennial playgrounds' to help woo and wow desired customers."

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