When it’s time for a first-time homebuyer to furnish their new living space, it’s highly unlikely they’ll model it after their former college dorm room. As shoppers grow older, many of their interests, priorities and buying habits naturally change and develop with them – yet few events disrupt old shopping routines like major life milestones. Moments like getting married, buying a new home or welcoming a new family member often prompt shoppers to explore new brands and purchase more items than when normally in-market for specific categories. The New York Times has even published research showing that major life events can reset shopping patterns and determine brand loyalty for years to come.

Reaching over 177 million active buyers who are logged in 80% of the time, eBay has access to a host of demographic and shopping-intent data that allow marketers to time activations around audiences making major brand decisions. Especially during tax season, one of the busiest shopping moments of the year on eBay, financial brands aware of these life stages can target audiences of all ages to provide robust resource centers for this time of year.

Using our audience insights, brands can be there to accompany shoppers taking the first steps into their newest life adventure.

New College Graduates Take on the “Real” World

Simply looking at purchase behavior doesn’t always tell the full story. For example, it’s easy to confuse recent college graduates with new homeowners, given that they both search for items in Home & Garden. However, telling the two apart helps brands build more precise and informed campaigns.

“Consumers who declare they’re recent grads in surveys go on to purchase small appliances, bedding and work clothes,” marketer Bill Glass explains. “They’re quite different from first-time homebuyers who also buy plenty of appliances, but already have bedding and clothes.”

The year of their graduation, purchases for young professionals spike through two weeks in March. Throughout this time and in June – another month with increased purchase activity – marketers have a unique opportunity to prepare soon-to-be and recent grads with what they’ll need to succeed off campus. Additionally, in preparation of tax season, advertisers that reach shoppers new to the workforce are more likely to find an audience interested in improving their financial literacy.

New Home, New Me

While recent graduates tend not to spend big on home items, other shoppers who are moving into new homes plan for the long term and purchase higher quality items. In fact, six of the top 10 keyword searches for movers on eBay are queries for premium and luxury brands.

To fill their new space, movers need a lot of items. Not only do they purchase a couch every 12 minutes on eBay, but they also buy vacuum cleaners every minute and kitchen appliances every nine seconds. The demand for new, quality products means buyers are searching and considering more brands than ever before. According to eBay audience data, about a third of movers are nearly 1,500% more likely than the average buyer to also belong to eBay’s “Brand Switcher” audience segment.

As movers search frequently for home products, advertisers have multiple opportunities to reach this receptive audience throughout their shopper journey – provided they plan ahead around the holiday rush. On eBay, searches for moving-related items spike during January.

New Parents Prepare on eBay

A 2017 report from the United States Department of Agriculture finds the average family spends $12,000 to $13,000 on everything from basic baby supplies to expensive toys throughout a child’s first year of life. In addition to welcoming a new family member, parents will also get to know new brands and products.

Last year, new parent shoppers on eBay viewed over 9,000 items each hour, with top sellers including toys, wipes and diapers. Parents also make more expensive, long-term purchases. In fact, nearly half of new parents are 1,816% more likely than the average eBay buyer to be in the market for a new car. Appealing to values of safety, security and quality, marketers can help buyers navigate their new parenting lifestyle and prepare them the future ahead.

Whether it’s being available to new buyers or celebrating loyal customers’ big life accomplishments, brands that pay attention to moments that matter can build long-lasting relationships.

Ready to take the next step? Contact our ad sales team.

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