Millennials Are All Grown Up: What House and Home Retailers Are Doing to Keep Up


J.C. Penney is hoping to woo millennials entering the homeowner’s market by revamping their Home and Housewares department. For years, this has proved to be J.C. Penney’s least profitable department, but that may soon change. The retail chain has launched collections of bed ensembles, window treatments, and home basics under three in-house labels: J.C. Penney Home, Royal Velvet and Studio for J.C. Penney Home. Items made with distressed fabrics, eclectic prints, and touches of decorative accents have all been created to appeal to the millennial shopper.

Appliances are back in…

According to J.C. Penney, they are looking at an emerging customer base, which they’ve labeled the “modern American mom”. This demographic accounts for 45 percent of sales and growing. On average, this shopper is 33 years old, female, and identifies with more than one culture. In the 1980s, J.C. Penney moved their focus from appliances to apparel. The shift is now moving back towards Home and Housewares as this demographic moves to purchase homes. J.C Penney now also offers same day pick-up and delivery service to satisfy e-commerce customers, offering various options for shoppers to receive merchandise on their terms.

…and other retailers paying attention

J.C. Penney isn’t the only department store targeting millennials, who will account for a larger piece of consumer spending as they age. Macy’s launched a redesigned, high-tech floor for these shoppers in the basement of its Herald Square flagship in New York City in an attempt to attract millennials. The Dollar General has also seen an influx of millennials (mostly female); they make up roughly 12 percent of their shoppers and 24 percent of their sales.


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