Millennials most likely to spend based on what they see on social media, survey shows

Millennials who are looking to save money may want to steer clear of social media.

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Millennials and Gen Z are among those who are most likely to spend money on experiences based on what they see on social media, a modern wealth survey released by Charles Schwab revealed. Nearly half of millennials said social media influenced their spending habits while Gen Z came in at a close 44 percent.

Baby boomers were the least likely to have social media influence their spending.

About 48 percent of millennials also said they were most likely to spend more than they can afford for a time out with their friends, according to the survey. Americans overall looked at how their friends were spending, rather than saving, money and another 60 percent wondered how their companions could afford the lavish trips and lifestyles they portrayed on social media.

The online survey was conducted by Logica Research from Feb. 8 to Feb. 14, 2019.

Social media platforms, including Facebook and Instagram, have made it easier for users to shop on their apps. Instagram announced last month it was adding a feature to allow people to “checkout” and buy products they see on posts without leaving the feed.

“Instagram is a place for people to treat themselves with inspiration, not a place to tax themselves with errands. It's a place to experience the pleasure of shopping versus the chore of buying. We build everything with this in mind,” Instagram said in its announcement.

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The company also created the account @shop which features fashion, beauty and home brands that help users, targeted toward working women in their 20s and 30s, to shop straight off the app. An editorial team at Instagram will be curating the feed to spotlight a brand a day.

“I think most of us who love to shop like hearing about the background of a product because it makes you appreciate it more,” Eva Chen, the company’s head of fashion partnerships, told Business of Fashion. “Fundamentally on Instagram, whether you are a person or you’re a brand or you’re a publisher, people want to hear human stories.”