How Different Generations Consume Content Online [Infographic]

By Kimberlee Morrison Comment


Millennials as a demographic receive a lot of attention when it comes to studying online behaviors. We know how Millennials search for news online, and why your content might not be reaching them. We seem to pay less attention to the other generations, and the differences between them. However, Fractl and Buzzstream teamed up to analyze how the different generations consume online media.

Interestingly, a higher proportion of Baby Boomers spend more than 20 hours per week consuming online content than either Millennials or Generation X users. Across other time brackets results are largely similar; however, more Gen-Xers and Millennials spent about 5-10 hours consuming online content.

More Boomers prefer to consume content in the early and late morning (5:00 a.m. to noon) rather than any other time of day. Millennials and Gen-Xers prefer to access content between 8:00 p.m. and midnight. In fact, 8:00 p.m. to midnight is when the majority of content is consumed overall.

There is also a generational split when it comes to devices. Boomers prefer desktops and laptops, as do Gen-Xers. Millennials are the biggest users of mobile, but only approximately 25 percent primarily use mobile devices, while most still use desktops and laptops.

When considering content type, every generation ranks blog articles as their favorite. All generations also agree that images, comments, and eBooks rank in the next three places. In 5th place Millennials prefer audiobooks, while Gen-Xers prefer case studies and Boomers prefer reviews.

Around 60 percent of each group uses Facebook to share content. The next most popular network is YouTube, but only 10 percent of survey respondents said they used YouTube to share content. Thereafter Boomers use Google+ the most, Gen-Xers prefer Twitter, Millennials are the primary users of Instagram and Tumblr.

For more information on the most shared visual content by each generation, and favorite content genres, view the infographic below.