What millennials want in their products, as told by a millennial.

by Ana Lopez

Opinions of contributing entrepreneurs are their own.

I am a millennial. And we’re now an influential and fast-growing demographic, so it’s essential for any business to understand our view of the product lifecycle. Products that previous generations may have preferred may be viewed differently by us, influencing the decisions of manufacturers, retailers and other industry stakeholders.

Millennials’ preference for short-term products can be attributed to our aversion to the effort, expense, and time required to maintain and repair items for the long haul. Convenience and immediate use are also desirable qualities of a product, because we want something that we can access quickly without investing in its maintenance.

Our generation is used to having access to the latest gadgets without making large purchases. Therefore, when it comes to product lifecycles, millennials prefer short-term options that don’t require too much commitment or financial burden. Short-term items are usually viewed as disposable or single-use items that do not require regular maintenance or repairs over time. This makes them ideal choices for people who want something readily available but don’t have the resources or capacity for a long-term investment.

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Planned obsolescence

Companies must consider the impact of planned obsolescence when making products if they want to maximize millennial appeal. Planned obsolescence is the deliberate design of products with a limited lifespan for customers to regularly replace with newer models so that businesses can remain competitive and profitable.

This strategy has been widely adopted by many tech companies lately, as it helps keep their brand current and allows them to target an increasingly fickle tech-savvy audience that always wants the latest version of whatever product they’re using.

Unlike short term products, longer term or high quality products often require more maintenance and support from service providers or technicians to last for years with minimal maintenance costs. This can be costly and time consuming in the long run, so millennials prefer brands that offer longevity without requiring too much maintenance.

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Environmentally friendly options

Many of these brands now offer eco-friendly designs and reusable components that minimize waste while providing better performance over a longer period of time. This appeals to millennials because it offers a more sustainable option that won’t quickly become obsolete due to changing technology trends or market demands.

These features often come with extended warranties and repair services, giving customers peace of mind as they invest in long-term products. Many of these brands partner with certified service centers with knowledgeable technicians who can provide regular maintenance and repairs for the product at an affordable cost. This ensures that users can keep their products working well even after the warranty period has expired, ensuring access to a reliable product for many years to come.

Companies should also consider offering different payment plans or leases for their products for different budgets. This would give millennials more options to buy quality items without having to worry about high initial costs.

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Availability

In addition, parts availability, repair services, and even warranties must be considered when looking at a product’s lifecycle. If a particular item needs to be repaired, but the parts needed are not readily available, customers may view investing in it as a poor decision, as repairs can become costly if parts cannot be readily purchased.

Furthermore, if warranties offered by brands only cover certain aspects, customers may refrain from purchasing their offerings due to the lack of assurance about its lifecycle performance. In such cases, brands should provide comprehensive support options, such as replacement warranties and access to trained technicians who can assist with repairs if a problem arises.

Connectivity

Modern companies need to consider connectivity in their product offerings to increase the appeal of millennials. Items such as smartphones need regular updates, which makes them quickly feel outdated if they are not updated. This means that access to compatible networks is essential to ensure that users can take advantage of the latest features offered by these products throughout their lifetime.

Companies need to ensure that their products are compatible with a wide range of services and applications so that customers can get the most out of them throughout their lives. Many companies now offer cloud services and integrations that enable more convenient use and performance when it comes to keeping devices up to date and taking advantage of new features and capabilities.

Related: The 3 Stakeholders Enabling Meaningful Connectivity

Overall, it’s clear that product lifecycles are an important consideration when looking at Millennials’ purchasing decisions — from height and features to availability and connectivity — as all of these factors influence the value of each item in the eyes of buyers. With this knowledge, companies now understand what appeals most to their younger audience and can optimize their offerings to maximize conversions while addressing the sensitivities of Millennial consumers. Now go out and sell me something.

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