Senior Sales: A New Age Group Emerging Online

While most senior citizens remain separated from the digital world, many are logging on and connecting online through smartphones and social media. With numbers increasing, should independent online retailers reconsider building target audiences with a specific focus on the elderly?

Exponential Growth

According to a recent study, smartphone adoption among seniors have nearly quadrupled in the last five years. (PEW Research Center) Nearly half of senior citizens remain without smartphones, but the population that has chosen to enter the digital world is bringing more than just a phone.

The Numbers

The following information comes from a recent study conducted by the PEW Research Center

  • Around four-in-ten (42%) adults ages 65 and older now report owning smartphones, up from just 18% in 2013.


  • Today, 67% of seniors use the internet – a 55-percentage-point increase in just under two decades.


  •  51% of adults 65+ and older have or use home broadband, compared to 0% in 2000.


  • Social media use among senior citizens has grown 32% since 2008.

What do these numbers mean for online store owners?

For those who working within the realm of e-commerce, this means that more senior citizens are joining the digital world and spending time online. Traditional marketing techniques are becoming marginalized among this age group, opening the gateway to new, innovative advertising strategies. More senior citizens are joining social media, reading articles online, and surfing the web, increasing the chance that they will come across your brand or company in the near future.

Discovering creative ways to find and connect with this age group online can prove to be profitable. As more senior citizens join us online, their buying power, purchasing trends, and media consumption will increase as well. How will you reach this age group and expand your target audience?