Online Marketing Forgets Older Women, a Key Demographic

Enough about the kids. The over-35 crowd is where the online sales are, research shows.

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By Mary Kate Cary, Thomas Jefferson Street Blog

Why did eveningwear designer Carmen Marc Valvo attend an AARP convention recently? The answer lies in a very interesting piece in today's Wall Street Journal by Christina Binkley discussing online apparel sales to older women:

Are online marketers so youth-conscious — because it feels right — that they're ignoring lucrative markets just when they're most needed? The Internet is neither new nor young. The fastest-growing segment of Facebook users is women over 55, according to the Tracking Facebook blog. And the underlying assumption that young people are still the Web's most fertile market doesn't hold up to scrutiny.

In fact, 65% of online apparel sales go to women over age 35, according to market researcher NPD Group. Among these, the fastest-growing sales are to women between 55 and 64 years old — a boomer population that has always been known for its willingness to indulge.

I was in American Eagle and Abercrombie recently with my daughters, and Binkley has it right: Women my age are the "forgotten market."

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