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Description

Description

Covered in this report

While the US population may be aging, kids remain critical decision makers and tastemakers. Kids can potentially influence purchases made by the over 260 million people living in family households in the US. Today’s kids have close relationships with their parents, and while parents do want to reserve major decisions such as choosing a new car for themselves, they value kids’ input. Kids are given a fair amount of discretion on items that primarily affect them – such as the food they eat and the activities they do – and also weigh in on family decisions like where to go on vacation. As would be expected, kids are more trusted to make decisions for themselves and their families as they get older.

"About 30% of households in the US include children, but as families typically spend more than other groups on food, clothing and many other types of goods, their significance far outweighs their numbers. Beyond increased spend, these younger households also drive consumer trends across categories. This Report analyzes the vital role children play in household purchases and decisions, which often go far beyond those that impact children exclusively. With the influence that children wield in many category decisions, brands may find the youngest members of a household are the most important to win over."

- Dana Macke, Associate Director - Lifestyles & Leisure

This Report looks at the following areas:

  • Strength beyond their numbers
  • Kids have little autonomy, but lots of influence
  • Opportunities in travel and leisure
  • Understanding the family life cycle

What's included

What's included

Table of contents

Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
      • Executive Summary

        • Market overview
          • Top takeaways
            • How kids influence household decisions
              • Strength beyond their numbers
                • Figure 1: Population, by generation, 2014-24
              • Kids have little autonomy, but lots of influence
                • Figure 2: Kids’ impact on small household purchases – data table, November 2019
              • Opportunities in travel and leisure
                • Figure 3: Kids’ impact on large household purchases – travel and holidays, November 2019
              • Understanding the family life cycle
                • Figure 4: House rules and kids’ impact on parents’ behavior – select items, by age of child, November 2019
              • What it means
              • Family Life – What You Need to Know

                • More than just their numbers
                  • A diverse new generation
                    • Access to funds of their own
                      • Opportunities to learn
                      • Family Demographics and Characteristics

                        • Influence that outweighs their numbers
                          • Figure 5: US population, by age, 2019
                        • Households with kids on the decline
                          • Figure 6: Households, by presence of related children, 2008-18
                        • Multicultural households most likely to have children
                          • Figure 7: Households with related children, by race and Hispanic origin of householder, 2019
                        • Emerging generation to outpace Gen Z
                          • Figure 8: Population by generation, 2014-24
                      • Family Perspectives

                        • Adults are more careful about money
                          • Figure 9: Adult and teen attitudes toward personal finance, June 2019
                        • Teens also have money of their own to spend
                          • Figure 10: Average weekly allowance of teens, 2013-19
                        • Strong bonds between kids and parents
                          • Figure 11: Teens’ attitudes toward family, 2014-19
                      • In Their Words: Maintaining a Balance

                          • Setting a good example
                            • Cars aren’t for kids
                              • Vacations: About more than just fun
                              • Key Trends – What You Need to Know

                                • Fun for the whole family
                                  • Freedom of choice
                                    • Sports take a hit
                                      • Striking back at screens?
                                        • The power of the spoken word
                                        • What’s In

                                          • Retailers make shopping a fun family outing
                                            • American Dream mall brings parents along for the ride
                                              • Disney’s store within a store
                                                • Figure 12: Disney Store at Target, 2019
                                              • Characters get kids to care, and parents to give in
                                                • Figure 13: Character-themed personal care products, 2019
                                              • Variety packs serve a variety of needs
                                                • Figure 14: Meal kits, 2019
                                                • Figure 15: Sun Basket Instagram post, November 2019
                                            • What’s Out

                                              • The kids’ sports slump
                                                • Sports participation is declining for children of all ages.
                                                  • Fear of injuries is one factor, lack of interest is another
                                                    • Reading faces tough competition
                                                    • What’s Next

                                                      • The screen time conundrum
                                                        • Still little consensus on screen time guidelines
                                                          • Race and income impact screen time
                                                            • Figure 16: Children’s daily screen time usage*, by age and key demographics, 2019
                                                          • Kids’ tech gap may widen in the future
                                                            • Speaking of the future
                                                              • Smart speakers answer the questions parents can’t
                                                                • Audio entertainment engages kids
                                                                • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                  • Kids help decide their own activities and food choices
                                                                    • Parents value kids’ input into travel, holidays
                                                                      • Concerns about sugar and inappropriate content
                                                                        • Every household has some rules
                                                                          • Kids help parents stay cool
                                                                            • Parents face many priorities
                                                                            • Kids’ Impact on Small Household Purchases

                                                                              • Parents decide on the basics, kids decide on the extras
                                                                                • Figure 17: Kids’ impact on small household purchases – correspondence analysis, November 2019
                                                                                • Figure 18: Kids’ impact on small household purchases – data table, November 2019
                                                                              • Older kids have more say on entertainment
                                                                                • Figure 19: Kids’ impact on small household purchases – kid-driven media purchases, by age of child, November 2019
                                                                              • Kids more likely to choose food they exclusively eat
                                                                                • Figure 20: Kids’ impact on small household purchases – kid-driven food purchases, by age of child, November 2019
                                                                              • Potential opportunity in personal care
                                                                                • Figure 21: Kids’ impact on small household purchases – kid-driven household purchases, by age of child, November 2019
                                                                              • Older kids get to drive their own activities
                                                                                • Figure 22: Kids’ impact on small household purchases – kid-driven activities, by age of child, November 2019
                                                                              • Asians very likely to consult their kids
                                                                                • Figure 23: Kids’ impact on small household purchases – kid-driven purchases, by race and ethnic origin, November 2019
                                                                            • Kids’ Impact on Large Household Purchases

                                                                              • Kids play a significant role in travel decisions
                                                                                • Figure 24: Kids’ impact on large household purchases, November 2019
                                                                              • School-aged kids start to weigh in on large decisions
                                                                                • Figure 25: Kids’ impact on large household purchases – select items, by age of child, November 2019
                                                                              • Moms drive travel decisions, boys drive electronics purchases
                                                                                • Figure 26: Kids’ impact on large household purchases – select items, by age of child, November 2019
                                                                              • Higher-income parents more likely to consult kids
                                                                                • Figure 27: Kids’ impact on large household purchases, by household income, November 2019
                                                                            • Getting Parents to Yes

                                                                              • Sugar a key concern
                                                                                • Figure 28: RXBAR product details, October 2019
                                                                                • Figure 29: Getting parents to consider new food or drinks, November 2019
                                                                              • Parents put more trust in older kids
                                                                                • Figure 30: Getting parents to consider new food or drinks, by age of child, November 2019
                                                                              • Age is more than just a number
                                                                                • Figure 31: Getting parents to consider new TV, movies or music, November 2019
                                                                              • “Age appropriate” matters at every age
                                                                                • Figure 32: Getting parents to consider new TV, movies or music, by age of child, November 2019
                                                                              • Significant differences emerge by age of parents
                                                                                • Figure 33: Getting parents to consider new food/drinks or media/content, by age of parents, November 2019
                                                                            • House Rules

                                                                              • Most house rules are around technology usage
                                                                                • Figure 34: House rules, November 2019
                                                                                • Figure 35: Number of house rules, November 2019
                                                                              • Moms and dads take slightly different approaches to screen time
                                                                                • Figure 36: House rules – select items, by gender of parent, November 2019
                                                                              • Parents loosen the reins as kids age
                                                                                • Figure 37: House rules – select items, by age of child, November 2019
                                                                              • Clothing a key issue for girls’ parents, activity for boys’ parents
                                                                                • Figure 38: House rules – select items, by gender of child, November 2019
                                                                            • Kids’ Impact on Parents’ Behavior

                                                                              • Kids keep parents on-trend
                                                                                  • Figure 39: Kids’ impact on parents’ behavior, November 2019
                                                                                • Influence grows and evolves over time
                                                                                  • Figure 40: Kids’ impact on parents’ behavior – select items, by age of child, November 2019
                                                                                • Moms open to new media
                                                                                  • Figure 41: Kids’ impact on parents’ behavior – select items, by parental gender, November 2019
                                                                                • Younger parents more flexible
                                                                                  • Figure 42: Kids’ impact on parents’ behavior, by age of parent, November 2019
                                                                              • Household Priorities

                                                                                • To parents, it’s all important
                                                                                  • Figure 43: Parents’ household priorities, November 2019
                                                                                • Greater transparency around money?
                                                                                  • Figure 44: Parents’ household priorities – teaching kids about money, November 2019
                                                                                • For food, health trumps choice
                                                                                  • Figure 45: Parents’ household priorities – meal times, November 2019
                                                                                • Parents prioritize household harmony
                                                                                  • Figure 46: Parents’ household priorities – select items, November 2019
                                                                                • But parents also want to stay the boss
                                                                                  • Figure 47: Parents’ household priorities – parental authority, November 2019
                                                                              • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                                • Data sources
                                                                                  • Consumer survey data
                                                                                    • Consumer qualitative research
                                                                                      • Methodology
                                                                                        • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                                          • Abbreviations

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