In the past year, 35 percent of Generation X and 33 percent of millennials have boycotted a company or product they had spent money on in the past, according to a new survey by financial consultancy CompareCards.com—in fact, 30 percent of Gen X and 26 percent of millennials are boycotting a brand right now.
With boycotts regularly making headlines, the firm asked Americans about their views. While there are many ways you can boycott a company or product, CompareCards chose to follow the money and asked whether people were currently participating in a boycott, or had in the past year, of a company they have previously purchased from.
Millennials and Gen Xers most likely to have recently boycotted something they’ve spent money on in the past:
Key findings of the research:
- Overall, 26 percent of all Americans are currently boycotting a company or product they had spent money on in the past, while 32 percent had boycotted at some point in the past year.
- More than half of respondents (53 percent) said they’d no longer shop at their favorite retailer if it publicly supported a person or cause they strongly disagreed with.
- More than half of credit card holders (55 percent) said they would stop using their favorite credit card if the issuer publicly supported a person or cause they strongly disagreed with.
- Nearly 8 in 10 Americans (78 percent) have boycotted in the past year or would consider doing so in the future under the right circumstances. However, about half (49 percent) say that people are too quick to recommend a boycott (while just 17 percent disagree).
- Nearly 6 in 10 Americans (58 percent) said they’re more likely to buy from a company that gives to charities or is associated with causes they believe in. Just 9 percent disagreed.
More than half of Americans said they’d be willing to boycott their favorite retailer:
Who is most likely to currently be boycotting? Men and parents with young kids
“These survey results should be an eye-opener for businesses across the country,” said Matt Schulz, chief industry analyst at CompareCards, in a news release. “Your customers are watching what you say and do, and if you back a cause or a person they strongly disagree with, they’re willing to kick you and your product to the curb. They’d even be willing to do that to their favorite retailer or their primary credit card. Ultimately, these results make it clear that most Americans simply want to be heard.”
The survey found that while many Americans feel that people are too quick to call for a boycott, most think they can be effective and would consider joining one in the future.
Americans’ mixed feelings about boycotts: They support them and think they’re effective but also think people are too quick to call for one:
CompareCards by LendingTree commissioned Qualtrics to conduct an online survey of 1,034 Americans, with the sample base proportioned to represent the general population. The survey was fielded Jan. 14-16, 2019, and the margin for error for all respondents is +/- 3%.