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The Shopping Experience of Asian Americans - US - August 2014

“Though Asians represent an enticing market, with substantial and growing buying power and many high-income and highly educated shoppers, marketers need to remember that Asians are an extremely diverse and multifaceted population.”

– Fiona O’Donnell, Category Manager – Multicultural, Lifestyles, Travel and Leisure

Some issues covered in this report include:

  • Avoiding the "model minority" pitfall
  • How can marketers target Asians while respecting their diversity?
  • How can marketers overcome Asians' reluctance to spend on nonessential consumer goods?

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Table of contents

  1. Scope and Themes

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
        • Data sources
          • Expenditure data
            • Consumer survey data
              • Abbreviations and terms
                • Abbreviations
                  • Terms
                  • Executive Summary

                      • Asian buying power is growing fast
                        • Few Asians shop to impress
                          • Figure 1: Top reasons to purchase something for themselves, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                        • Price and quality essential for most Asians
                          • Figure 2: Very important factors for Asians when shopping, all versus Indians, May 2014
                        • Asians love sales and coupons
                          • Figure 3: Attitudes toward shopping – Deal seekers – Any agree, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                        • Indian Americans value good service
                          • Figure 4: Attitudes toward shopping – Service/Experience seekers – Any agree, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                        • Asians relatively independent shoppers
                          • Figure 5: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Influentials – Any agree, by dominant culture, May 2014
                        • Brands important to most Asians
                          • Figure 6: Attitudes toward shopping – Brand loyal/shopping adventure – Any agree, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                        • One in four Asians is a shopaholic
                          • Figure 7: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Shopaholics – Any agree, all versus Indians, May 2014
                        • Asians careful shoppers, but spend more online
                          • Figure 8: Asians’ top perceptions of purchasing behavior, May 2014
                        • Education and family lead among Asian values
                          • Figure 9: Select Asian values, by dominant culture, May 2014
                        • What we think
                        • Issues and Insights

                            • Avoiding the “model minority” pitfall
                              • The issues
                                • The implications
                                  • How can marketers target Asians while respecting their diversity?
                                    • The issues
                                      • The implications
                                        • How can marketers overcome Asians’ reluctance to spend on nonessential consumer goods?
                                          • The issues
                                            • The implications
                                            • Trend Application

                                                • Trend: Why Buy
                                                  • Trend: Return to the Experts
                                                    • Trend: Mood to Order
                                                    • Asian Household Expenditures

                                                      • Key points
                                                        • Asians lead in spending on apparel and accessories
                                                            • Figure 10: Expenditures of Asian households, indexed to all households, 2010-12*
                                                          • Asians spend more of the household apparel budget on the adults
                                                            • Figure 11: Distribution of total apparel expenditures of Asian and total households, by segment, 2010-12*
                                                        • Marketing Strategies

                                                            • Theme: Asian language advertising
                                                                • Figure 12: Wells Fargo “Commercial Conversations 2.0” TV spot: Chinese-American Market, 2013
                                                                • Figure 13: Wells Fargo “Commercial Conversations 2.0” TV spot: Indian American Market, 2013
                                                              • Theme: Targeting English-speaking Asians
                                                                • Toyota’s pop-oriented campaigns cut across cultures
                                                                  • Figure 14: Music video for “Baby Let’s Go” by Asiatix, featuring the 2014 Toyota Corolla, 2013
                                                                • AARP showcases accomplished Asian Americans
                                                                  • Figure 15: AARP print ad, 2013
                                                                • Theme: Lunar New Year – The other holiday season
                                                                  • Figure 16: Citi and Hyundai Chinese New Year print ads, 2014
                                                              • Asians and Shopping Motivations

                                                                • Key points
                                                                  • Most Asians shop for personal reasons
                                                                    • Figure 17: Reasons Asians purchase something for themselves, May 2014
                                                                  • Asian shoppers less motivated by trends and social pressure
                                                                    • Figure 18: Reasons to purchase something for themselves, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                                                                  • Acculturated Asians use shopping as a reward
                                                                    • Figure 19: Reasons Asians purchase something for themselves, by dominant culture, May 2014
                                                                  • More Indian Americans shop to impress
                                                                    • Figure 20: Reasons Asians purchase something for themselves, by country, May 2014
                                                                • Where Asians Shop and Why

                                                                  • Key points
                                                                    • Price and quality drive Asians’ shopping choices
                                                                      • Figure 21: Very important factors for Asians when shopping May 2014
                                                                    • More Asians will sacrifice convenience for quality and price
                                                                      • Figure 22: Very important factors when shopping, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                                                                    • Unacculturated Asians look for exciting, trendy brands
                                                                      • Figure 23: Important factors for Asians when shopping, by dominant culture, May 2014
                                                                    • Indian Americans seek fun and excitement when shopping
                                                                      • Figure 24: Important factors for Asians when shopping, by country, May 2014
                                                                    • Asian shoppers important to high-end department stores
                                                                      • Figure 25: Where purchases are made (in-store or online), by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                                                                    • Asians are avid online shoppers
                                                                      • Figure 26: Where Asians make purchases, in-store versus online, May 2014
                                                                    • Higher-income Asians key target for many retailers
                                                                      • Figure 27: Where Asians make purchases (in-store or online), by household income, May 2014
                                                                  • Asians’ Attitudes Toward Shopping

                                                                    • Key points
                                                                      • Asians are active deal seekers
                                                                        • Figure 28: Attitudes toward shopping – Deal seekers – Any agree, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                                                                      • Acculturated Asians bigger bargain hunters
                                                                        • Figure 29: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Deal seekers – Any agree, by dominant culture, May 2014
                                                                      • Asians value knowledgeable salespeople
                                                                        • Figure 30: Attitudes toward shopping – Service/Experience seekers – Any agree, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                                                                      • Good service is important to Indian Americans
                                                                        • Figure 31: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Service/Experience seekers – Any agree, by country, May 2014
                                                                      • Asians relatively independent shoppers
                                                                        • Figure 32: Attitudes toward shopping – Influentials – Any agree, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                                                                      • Unacculturated Asians shop more socially
                                                                        • Figure 33: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Influentials – Any agree, by dominant culture, May 2014
                                                                      • Indian Americans highly social consumers
                                                                        • Figure 34: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Influentials – Any agree, by country, May 2014
                                                                      • Brands important to most Asians
                                                                        • Figure 35: Attitudes toward shopping – Brand loyal/shopping adventure – Any agree, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                                                                      • Young Asians most interested in new products
                                                                        • Figure 36: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Brand loyal/shopping adventure – Any agree, by age, May 2014
                                                                      • Indians like to try new products
                                                                        • Figure 37: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Brand loyal/shopping adventure – Any agree, by country, May 2014
                                                                      • One in four Asians is a shopaholic
                                                                        • Figure 38: Attitudes toward shopping – Shopaholics – Any agree, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                                                                      • Young adults and Indian Americans most likely to love shopping
                                                                        • Figure 39: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Shopaholics – Any agree, by age, May 2014
                                                                        • Figure 40: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Shopaholics – Any agree, by country, May 2014
                                                                      • Asian women thrifty but enthusiastic shoppers
                                                                        • Figure 41: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping, by gender, November 2012-December 2013
                                                                      • Higher-income Asians more interested in new retailers
                                                                        • Figure 42: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping, by household income, November 2012-December 2013
                                                                    • Asians’ Perceptions of Purchasing Behavior

                                                                      • Key points
                                                                        • Asians careful shoppers, but spend more online
                                                                          • Figure 43: Asians’ perceptions of purchasing behavior, May 2014
                                                                        • Asians outspend Blacks and Hispanics online
                                                                          • Figure 44: Perceptions of purchasing behavior, by Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks, February and May 2014
                                                                        • Image and status drive spending for more unacculturated Asians
                                                                          • Figure 45: Asians’ perceptions of their purchasing behavior, by dominant culture, May 2014
                                                                        • Promotions play a big role in Asians’ purchase decisions
                                                                          • Figure 46: Promotions impacting Asians’ purchase decisions, May 2014
                                                                        • Asians well-informed and influential consumers
                                                                          • Figure 47: Shopping behaviors – Any agree, by Asian gender, November 2012-December 2013
                                                                      • Impact of Gender and Household Income

                                                                        • Key points
                                                                          • Asian women more likely to get viral
                                                                            • Figure 48: Asians’ shopping habits, by gender and household income, May 2014
                                                                            • Figure 49: Asians’ interest in shopping, by gender and household income, May 2014
                                                                          • High-income men head to high-end stores
                                                                            • Figure 50: Types of stores Asians shopped at, by gender and household income, May 2014
                                                                          • Women drawn to style, trends
                                                                            • Figure 51: Factors impacting Asians’ store selection, by gender and household income, May 2014
                                                                          • Women more likely to see community preserving heritage
                                                                            • Figure 52: Asian values, by gender and household income, May 2014
                                                                        • Asian Values

                                                                          • Key points
                                                                            • There are no “Asian values,” but education and family come closest
                                                                              • Figure 53: Asian values, May 2014
                                                                            • Acculturated Asians find more agreement on Asian values
                                                                              • Figure 54: Asian values, by dominant culture, May 2014
                                                                              • Figure 55: Asian values, by country, May 2014
                                                                          • Buying Power of Asian Americans

                                                                            • Key points
                                                                              • Asian American buying power growing the fastest
                                                                                • Figure 56: Purchasing power, by race/Hispanic origin, 1990-2018
                                                                                • Figure 57: Purchasing power, by race/Hispanic origin, 1990-2018
                                                                                • Figure 58: Top 10 US states ranked by share of Asian buying power, 2013
                                                                                • Figure 59: Top 10 states ranked by Dollar amount of Asian buying power, 2013
                                                                              • US household income distribution
                                                                                • Figure 60: Median household income, by race/Hispanic origin of householder, 2012
                                                                            • Demographics of Asians in America

                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                • Population trends
                                                                                  • Figure 61: Population by race and Hispanic origin, 2009-19
                                                                                  • Figure 62: Asian, Black, and Hispanic populations, 1970-2020
                                                                                  • Figure 63: Population, by race and Hispanic origin, 1970-2020
                                                                                • Share of births
                                                                                  • Figure 64: Distribution of births, by race of mother, 2002-12
                                                                                • Asian American share of population by age
                                                                                  • Figure 65: Asian American share of population, by age, 2009-19
                                                                                • US population by race/ethnicity and gender
                                                                                  • Figure 66: Women, by race and Hispanic origin, 2009-19
                                                                                  • Figure 67: Men, by race and Hispanic origin, 2009-19
                                                                                • Asian American population by gender and age
                                                                                  • Figure 68: Age distribution of Asian women, 2009-19
                                                                                  • Figure 69: Age distribution of Asian men, 2009-19
                                                                                • Characteristics
                                                                                  • Marital status
                                                                                    • Figure 70: Marital status of people aged 18 or older, by race and Hispanic origin, 2013
                                                                                    • Figure 71: Marital status of Asians, by age, 2013
                                                                                    • Figure 72: Marital status of Asians, by age, 2013
                                                                                  • Gender ratio
                                                                                    • Figure 73: Gender ratio of Asians versus general population, by age, 2014
                                                                                  • Household size
                                                                                    • Figure 74: Average household size and average number of adults and children in households, by race and Hispanic origin, 2013
                                                                                  • Children in the household
                                                                                    • Figure 75: Households, by presence and ages of own children, 2013
                                                                                  • Generations
                                                                                    • Figure 76: Generations, by race, 2014
                                                                                    • Figure 77: Population, by race and generation, 2014
                                                                                    • Figure 78: Distribution of generations, by race and Hispanic origin, 2014
                                                                                  • Asians by country of origin/heritage
                                                                                    • Figure 79: Asian population, by country of origin/heritage, 2010
                                                                                    • Figure 80: Asian demographics, by country of origin/heritage, 2010
                                                                                  • Chinese (23% of Asian Americans)
                                                                                    • Filipinos (20% of Asian Americans)
                                                                                      • Indians (18% of Asian Americans)
                                                                                        • Vietnamese (10% of Asian Americans)
                                                                                          • Koreans (10% of Asian Americans)
                                                                                            • Japanese (8% of Asian Americans)
                                                                                              • Other (11% of Asian Americans)
                                                                                                • Figure 81: Population of 14 largest “other” Asian subgroups, by country of origin, 2010
                                                                                              • Asian Americans by geographic concentration
                                                                                                • Figure 82: Largest Asian groups, by country of origin/ancestry, by region, 2010
                                                                                              • States by Asian share of population
                                                                                                • Figure 83: Asian population as a percent of total population by state, 2010
                                                                                                • Figure 84: States ranked by Asian share of population, 2010
                                                                                              • States with the most Asian population growth
                                                                                                • Figure 85: Asian population rate of change by state, 2000-10
                                                                                                • Figure 86: States ranked by change in Asian population, 2000-10
                                                                                              • Key Asian American metropolitan areas
                                                                                                • Figure 87: Metropolitan areas with the largest number of Asian residents, by country of origin/ancestry, 2010
                                                                                                • Figure 88: Concentration of Asian Americans by county, 2010
                                                                                              • Asians online
                                                                                                • Figure 89: Frequency of Internet use, by race and Hispanic origin, 2010
                                                                                            • Appendix – Other Useful Consumer Tables

                                                                                              • Asians and shopping motivations
                                                                                                • Reasons to purchase
                                                                                                  • Figure 90: Reasons Asians purchase something for themselves, by gender, May 2014
                                                                                                  • Figure 91: Reasons Asians purchase something for themselves, by age, May 2014
                                                                                                  • Figure 92: Reasons Asians purchase something for themselves, by presence of children in household, May 2014
                                                                                                  • Figure 93: Reasons Asians purchase something for themselves, by region, May 2014
                                                                                                • Where Asians shop and why
                                                                                                  • Where purchases are made
                                                                                                    • Figure 94: Where Asians make purchases (in-store or online), by age, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Figure 95: Where Asians make purchases (in-store or online), by presence of children in household, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Figure 96: Where Asians make purchases (in-store or online), by gender and household income, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Figure 97: Where Asians make purchases (in-store or online), by dominant culture, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Figure 98: Where Asians make purchases (in-store or online), by country, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Figure 99: Where Asians make purchases (in-store or online), by region, May 2014
                                                                                                  • Important factors
                                                                                                    • Figure 100: Important factors for Asians when shopping, by gender, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Figure 101: Important factors for Asians when shopping, by age, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Figure 102: Important factors for Asians when shopping, by presence of children in household, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Figure 103: Important factors for Asians when shopping, by gender and household income, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Figure 104: Important factors for Asians when shopping, by region, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Figure 105: Important factors for Asians when shopping, by birth country, May 2014
                                                                                                  • Asians’ attitudes toward shopping
                                                                                                    • Attitudinal groupings
                                                                                                      • Figure 106: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Any agree, by age, May 2014
                                                                                                      • Figure 107: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Any agree, by presence of children in household, May 2014
                                                                                                      • Figure 108: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Any agree, by gender and household income, May 2014
                                                                                                      • Figure 109: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Any agree, by country, May 2014
                                                                                                      • Figure 110: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Any agree, by region, May 2014
                                                                                                      • Figure 111: Asians’ attitudes toward shopping – Any agree, by dominant culture, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Simmons attitudes
                                                                                                      • Figure 112: Asian’s attitudes toward shopping, by age, November 2012-December 2013
                                                                                                      • Figure 113: Asian’s attitudes toward shopping, by presence of children in household, November 2012-December 2013
                                                                                                    • Asians’ perceptions of purchasing behavior
                                                                                                      • General perceptions
                                                                                                        • Figure 114: Asians’ perceptions of their purchasing behavior, by gender, May 2014
                                                                                                        • Figure 115: Asians’ perceptions of their purchasing behavior, by age, May 2014
                                                                                                        • Figure 116: Asians’ perceptions of their purchasing behavior, by gender and household income, May 2014
                                                                                                        • Figure 117: Asians’ perceptions of their purchasing behavior, by country, May 2014
                                                                                                      • Simmons shopping behavior
                                                                                                        • Figure 118: Asians’ shopping behavior – Any agree, by age, November 2012-December 2013
                                                                                                      • Asian values
                                                                                                        • Figure 119: Asian values, by gender, May 2014
                                                                                                        • Figure 120: Asian values, by age, May 2014
                                                                                                        • Figure 121: Asian values, by presence of children in household, May 2014
                                                                                                        • Figure 122: Asian values, by gender and household income, May 2014
                                                                                                        • Figure 123: Asian values, by region, May 2014
                                                                                                    • Appendix – Trade Associations

                                                                                                      Companies Covered

                                                                                                      To learn more about the companies covered in this report please contact us.

                                                                                                      The Shopping Experience of Asian Americans - US - August 2014

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