Discover the Gen X consumer.

Gen X are major spenders in US consumer goods & general merchandise, surpassing even Boomers. As their children begin to start their own lives and raise families of their own, Gen X is becoming empty nesters. They are transfering their lucrative spend to other categories, brands and retailers. See what Gen X is doing today with their shopping behavior and other buying habits.

Gen X (born between 1965 and 1981) make up 30.4% of US households. In fact, Gen X households spend the most out of any generation in the US. They spend $16,880 annually for CPG & general merchandise. They make over 480 shopping trips in a year and spend $35 on each of those trips, on average. 

Gen X represents the total US in the retailers they shop. They primarily spend their money at Walmart (19% of spend), Amazon (10%) and Costco (7%). The top brands that overindex with Gen X were overwhelmingly snacks and sweets related and highlights a generational following to nostalgic brands. Gen X are over 27% more likely to purchase Combos, 100 Grand and Whatchamacallits compared to the total US.



of Total US Households


Spend per Household


Trips per Household


Spend per Trip

Source: Numerator | Sectors include: Baby, Grocery, Health & Beauty, Household, Pet, Electronics, Home & Garden, Office, Sports, Tools & Home Improvement & Toys. Only showing brands with Gen X penetration >5%.

Who is the Gen X shopper?

Gen X represents a white-predominant shopper at 63% of households with Black and Hispanic / Latino households making up 15% each and Asians at 6%. 

They also represent an age group that is seeing their children off from the house as 2 in 3 (64%) of Gen X households do not have children living in the home. The largest household size for Gen X are 2 person / couple households, representing 30% of Gen X. However, 28% of them still live in larger homes consisting of four or more people requiring brands and retailers to segment their shoppers to reach all Gen X shoppers.

Gen X incomes sit in two main ranges: middle income (44%) and high income (39%). They are likely to be found in suburban locations followed by urban and rural geographies.

What are the major trends happening with Gen X?

Craving food on-the-go.

Gen X appreciates the convenience of eating out. The average Gen X shopper is 14% more likely compared to total US to say they eat out because they are too busy to cook. Although Gen Z is still emerging in driving recent traffic to limited-service restaurants, Gen X is the base consumer group for fast food.

Among the top 10 limited-services restaurants (LSRs), Gen X overindexes in penetration across all of them compared to the total US. That’s in contrast to Millennials who only overindex on Starbucks and Gen Z overindexing on Chick-fil-A and Starbucks. Boomers fair better with 6 of the top 10 LSRs overindexing, particularly at Arbys and Dairy Queen.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise as 1 in 10 (9.9%) Gen X households say they eat out four or more times per week. The single biggest biggest reason for dining out among this groups is to satisfy a craving at 35%, followed by “treating myself” (28%) and “treating my family” at (27%).

It's all about me now.

Becoming empty nesters and no longer having children at home to worry about, Gen X is looking to do three things:

    • Treat themselves to new gadgets for the house such as security equipment or for themselves like speakers and headphones.
    • Travel by purchasing new luggage and travel accessories.
    • Take care of their health & wellness both inside and out by purchasing products such as vitamins and fragrances.

These three trends are evident in Gen X purchasing behavior among the top growing departments. In fact, 9 of the 10 departments were growing at or above total US growth, showcasing differentiated growth beyond market dynamics.


GLP-1 use on the rise.

Numerator research found that consumers who are using GLP-1 primarily for weight loss are 44% more likely to be Gen X compared to non-users. Gen X represents 43% of GLP-1 weight loss users.

As spending power grows and Gen X looks to take care of themselves, consumption of food and snacking categories could face disproportionate impacts. However, the impacts of GLP-1 could extend beyond just regular consumer goods and into areas such as the apparel industry or even airlines.

In our latest survey, we found that GLP-1 weight loss users were over 60% more likely to say they have purchased from Abercrombie & Fitch, Coach and Michael Kors compared to non-GLP-1 users. As GLP-1 users lose weight, new wardrobes will be needed and brands that connect with these users could see tailwinds.

Understand the consumer across generations through our deep dives.

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