College students love to shop … online

This article is contributed by Samantha Gray

Although college students don’t have a lot of disposable income, they still love to shop. Items most purchased by twenty-something’s include food, clothing and shoes, textbooks, electronics and entertainment products.

Even though a college student’s buying power isn’t so great while in college, businesses are wise to do their best to please this consumer group from the outset. After all, a poor college student will eventually become an employed adult with a strong income stream.

college student online

One of the most reliable ways a retailer can guarantee the business of young adults is to provide a streamlined, secure online shopping experience. This age group has grown up with the idea of online shopping since the option made its debut in the 90’s, so this is a feature that most of them expect from reputable retail providers.

Not only does this consumer group expect their favorite retailers to provide an online shopping platform, but they also expect it to be designed and organized in a particular way. They are also not naïve when it comes to credit card and personal information security features. If you want to earn their business, you will have to meet all these standards.

There are a few key things twenty-something’s look at before they decide to make purchases on the Internet. These include:

  • Modern, attractive web design that matches your company’s logo and theme.
  • The ability to interact with large photographs of available products. These photographs should provide the option to zoom in and view the product from all angles.
  • Products organized and labeled in a similar fashion as your retail stores.
  • The ability to quickly search for a particular product or brand through a search bar at the top of your site’s page.
  • Visible proof of your company’s commitment to safeguard your customer’s private information; this includes everything from contact information to credit card information.
  • Invoices automatically emailed to your customer.
  • Multiple shipping options; from a cheaper ground shipping option to a more expensive express shipping option.
  • The ability to earn free ground shipping by spending a certain amount (usually $50 to $100).
  • The ability to track the shipping of purchased items.

If businesses want to make lifetime customers out of current college students, they will need to realize the importance of online shopping. After all, this generation has been using computers and the Internet for everything (reading books, listening to music, attending school, communicating with friends and family) for nearly their entire lives. The online experience is an integral part of this generation’s daily life, and retailers must meet this demand.

Author Bio: Samantha Gray was born and raised in Houston, Texas, where she is now a freelance writer. Her niche is education, and her passion is producing and consuming media of all sorts. She loves receiving feedback from her readers at

Image Credit: Courtesy of Jerry Bunkers via Flickr

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