Millennials are a mixed bag of young people coming of age, and energetic twenty-somethings approaching the prime of their lives regarding productivity, income, and spending, and any business that wants to be around in five years needs to start taking them seriously.

To connect with the Millennial mindset, here are a few simple, yet important marketing, design and UX considerations:

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Speak the Millennial language

When Millennials visit a website, they’re not impressed by slick design or gimmicky language. They’re looking for a more personal experience. This means that they’re more interested in personal engagements as well as developing actual relationships with a brand. As a marketer, this requires more effort on your part to think more carefully about the content on your website and making it look more authentic.

Show your customers that you understand them, or at least want to. Do this by implementing more user-generated content. This would help convince Millennials that you’re on the same page that they’re on.

Make Encounters Simple and Seamless

Millennials are technologically literate by default. The younger they are, the more likely they are to turn to their mobile devices instead of desktop PCs or laptops. They’ve got higher standards than you might imagine; being less forgiving when it comes to basic elements of design and a user experience that is clumsy, cluttered, and faulty.

Despite what you might assume about having to spoon-feed this demographic, they are very handy and embrace do-it-yourself workflows, especially when it comes to online purchases and similar transactions. Make sure to have the resources accessible so they can get things done at their speed, and on their own terms.

Of Course, Make it Mobile

Research shows that 80% of Millennials own a smartphone, and they spend most of their time using their data plans to access the Internet more than ever before.

It’s one thing to optimize your website for mobile devices, and we won’t argue against its importance. Nowadays, plenty of spacing, fast-loading graphics and streamlined landing pages are expected.

Almost a third of Millennials are using more than four mobile devices per day. This means actually having an iOS or Android app for your online store to make the experience more efficient works to your advantage. And if you choose to have apps, videos, games or other marketing strategies on your website, make sure they’re fully functional across a wide range of browsers and mobile operating systems.

Embrace Social and Sharing

Millennials spend about 30 percent of their social media time on user-generated content, and it’s no surprise that they are a very social generation. They’re outspoken on Facebook, engaging on Twitter, posting on Snapchat and Instagram, and critiquing on Yelp. Millennials are vocal about their opinions. As a marketer, you should embrace this characteristic.

Give your customers the option to share the content on your website. Place Like and Share buttons on your products, services, graphical and video content, and even on your articles.

Millennials have a unique need to connect with others in order to make decisions about purchasing things. User-generated content should serve you well here, and using a variety of platforms works to your advantage.

Instagram is particularly popular among Millennials, allowing them to capture and document their experiences, repost them, and browse the experiences of other users to see if they can relate.

By involving your customers in your marketing strategy, such as encouraging them to post video product reviews, you’ll stand head and shoulders above the competition.

Enable Self-Service Solutions On Your Site

Millennials are so accustomed to technology that they have high standards and expectations. When it comes to customer service, they expect to see call-to-action buttons on your site, as well as easy accessibility via Twitter and instant messaging apps.

What this means for your business is that self-service is the norm, and that Millennials will initiate the conversation and look to solve problems on their own, cutting out the middlemen. They simply won’t bother with live chat on your website or sending an email to customer service, let alone waiting in the queue during a tech support call. They need their phones for data, not actual phone calls, as far as you’re concerned.

Be sure to include plenty of resources such as community discussion forums, a dedicated FAQ page, and troubleshooting and DIY tutorials. Your users will prefer to solve their problems on their own instead of depending on a customer service representative to sort things out.

Design That Connects With the Millennial Mindset

Use visually engaging graphical elements. Items on your site or app should be clickable, allowing users to tap, swipe, hover, select, zoom and manipulate to enhance your customers’ experience.

Make the online experience consistent, and implement continuity. When your users reopen your website to resume shopping, it should feel as if they’ve never left the store. This applies across devices as well, as they expect their shopping cart to be as they left it when they browse your store on another computer.

Personalized communication and a customized experience are what make Millennials feel involved and in control. Sending personalized thank-you emails after they’ve purchased a product from you is actually meaningful for them.

Attention to small details like these can make a huge difference in your success with this powerful group of people.

How’s your track record among Millennials, Generation X, and Baby Boomers? We’d like to know, so leave a comment below.

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