Why minimalists are maximally important

MiQ research reveals what makes a consumer segment that has boomed since the start of the pandemic tick.


MiQ has singled out the importance of a new shopper segment – minimalists.

The marketing intelligence firm’s latest insights were part of a comparison of pre- and post-social distancing shopping behaviour, compiled from mobile and connection TV and location data.

Based on the results, consumers were divided into five shopper types, the largest of which, at 29%, is minimalists.

MiQ’s survey reveals that the minimalist demo are predominantly suburbanites, more than half of whom (59%) are married couples with kids, with moderate household incomes. While they haven’t previously been majorly digitally inclined, the group has been making its first major foray into online shopping.

Minimalist shopping activity on mobile phones and tablets was up 31% among this audience segment, with gaming activity increasing by 19% and 43% on mobile devices and consoles, respectively. Minimalists’ propensity to order online food has almost doubled since lockdown began, and marketers should be mindful that QSRs could really benefit from attracting this segment.

According to MiQ insights, minimalists have a high tendency to attempt to save on nonessential purchases, and increased its pre-purchase research and time spent on coupon/discount sites. Despite their disproportionately low online consumption patterns, this group over-indexes on time spent on deal aggregating website and apps, compared with other groups.

A large portion of these segments are likely to turn to big-box stores like Walmart and Best Buy for their daily needs in a post-pandemic world, long the segment’s preferred type of retailers, but the convenience and competitive pricing on online domains might still continue to offer a viable alternative even after shopping big box is once again safe and viable.


The next largest group, MiQ data reveals, is self-improvers (21%), a demo that’s taken up new hobbies like cooking or gardening, and have made meal prep kits a regular part of their diet as they search for food and cooking content online.

Finance website-obsessed money managers (19%) are a demo that’s seeing its activity on ecommerce platforms leap 74% during lockdown. According to the MiQ report, consumers in this group remain the key target for luxury brands and non-essential brands looking to target consumers not yet compelled to manage tight budgets during the pandemic.

Rounding out the five, parent-teacher playmates (18%), are similar to minimalists, but have always tended to be high-online spenders and primarily city-dwelling parents. Fitness fanatics (13%) are primarily men but with a notable subset of females that heavily researches healthy meals online.