HSN TV and Ecommerce Audience Demographics (2023)

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Published on: April 14, 2023

HSN (Home Shopping Network) is a cable TV network that broadcasts live 24/7 to millions of US homes. As of 2023, HSN and QVC combined reach over 100 million US homes. Worldwide, QVC reaches over 200 million homes via 12 TV channels. HSN/QVC reach millions more customers via HSN+ and QVC+ digital streaming platforms, ecommerce websites, mobile apps, and social media pages.

HSN TV Shopping Channel audience demographics

HSN (Home Shopping Network) is a cable TV network that broadcasts live 24/7 to millions of US homes. As of 2023, HSN and QVC combined reach over 100 million US homes. Worldwide, QVC reaches over 200 million homes via 12 TV channels. HSN/QVC reach millions more customers via HSN+ and QVC+ digital streaming platforms, ecommerce websites, mobile apps, and social media pages.

HSN broadcasts 1,344 hours of live TV per week. Peak viewing time is midnight EST.

Home Shopping Network's audience demographics

HSN.com Ecommerce Website audience demographics 

HSN.com is a top-trafficked ecommerce marketplace, ranked #21 in the US with over 9 million visitors per month.

Home Shopping Network's ecommerce demographics

Younger audiences are discovering Q brands via digital channels like social media. (According to a 2016 Nielsen survey, consumers aged 18-34 watch 47% less TV than consumers aged 35+.) HSN has experimented with marketing micro-brands to younger audiences (i.e. Millennials and Gen Z) on Instagram, while continuing to market primarily to middle-aged women on Facebook.

The majority of social media-driven traffic to HSN.com comes from Facebook. They also get millions of views via livestream shopping on Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok.

Home Shopping Network's Instagram follower demographics

Who is the target audience of HSN?

“We love her. We talk about her all the time. There’s not a minute of the day that goes by that we’re not thinking about her,” said Katherine Rush, HSN VP of Marketing, in a 2015 interview with Racked. “Everything we do and everything we curate is with her in mind.”

So, who is she?

Rush listed the following characteristics of HSN’s target audience:

  • Woman aged 35+
  • Looking to buy a range of personal and household products—“everything from shapewear to kitchen appliances”—from a trusted source
  • Loves to shop on her own terms, forgoing the in-person shopping experience for the convenience and reliability of HSN
  • The older she gets, the more free time and disposable income she has
  • Highly fashion-conscious
  • Driven by quality as much as price
  • Hungry to learn about new products and tell her friends

Though HSN/QVC have an overlapping customer base, they take different approaches to describe their target audience. While HSN goes into detail about “her” life, personality, and interests, QVC sticks to the basics.

Characteristics of QVC’s target audience:

  • Woman aged 35-64
  • Has a high school diploma or higher
  • Higher-than-median income
  • Shops on the internet at least once per week
  • Watches some kind of cable, digital, or satellite TV
  • Primary shopper in her household

The target shopper is likely also a repeat customer. QVC reports that over 90% of their sales come from repeat customers, with customers ordering an average of 25 items per year.

Customers also value exclusivity. According to a 2015 MarketWatch report, brands and products exclusive to HSN account for 70% of total sales.

What else can we learn about the average HSN/QVC shopper? Let’s take a closer look at her interests.

5 interests of HSN TV and ecommerce shoppers

1. Fashion & apparel

Clothes, shoes, and handbags are top sellers on HSN.com. 76% of their Instagram followers display interest in “Beauty & Fashion.” Their target shopper is “highly fashion-conscious.”

That data becomes more meaningful with context. In this case, the age bracket.

“She” isn’t a teen or twentysomething—she’s a middle-aged woman, likely married, likely a parent, likely buying clothes not just for herself but for her family as well. She’s loyal to certain brands and knows what she likes. Whereas younger consumers are turning to fast fashion, “she” is looking for well-made, long-lasting pieces and is willing to pay more for quality.

“Where else can a designer sell 40,000 of one jacket in a 24-hour period of time?”

Diane Gilman, aka The Jean Queen, designs her denim line for women in their 50s and 60s, a customer base the retail world tends to ignore. The brand is size-inclusive of a diverse range of body types, made with changing bodies and older women in mind. Targeting an overlooked customer base has made The Jean Queen one of HSN’s most popular hosts.

2. Food & cooking

HSN viewers also love channels like The Food Network, and HSN’s culinary segments are among their most popular programming. Viewers can buy cookware from celebrities like Dominique Ansel, Wolfgang Puck, and Martha Stewart, plus a vast assortment of other cookware lines, including tried-and-true classics like Cuisinart and Nordic Ware.

In the first half of 2020, culinary sales skyrocketed as viewers in COVID-19 lockdown began investing more time and energy in home cooking. (For example, breadmakers and pasta machines experienced huge spikes.) The numbers have settled since 2020, but food programming remains a cornerstone of HSN. Viewers love to shop useful, high-quality cookware—especially tools that make cooking easier and more convenient. 

3. Celebrity brands

A difference between TV shopping vs. other types of retail is the value of a familiar face. HSN viewers aren’t just buying products—they’re buying products from people they recognize and trust, whether that person is a host, celebrity, or entrepreneur.

Joy Mangano—popular host and inventor of HSN’s hugely successful Huggable Hangers—spends her airtime not just selling products, but chatting with customers who call in. Other best-selling celebrity brands offer everything from home decor to fashion to perfume, and big names include Iman, Giuliana Rancic, and Jessica Simpson. Celebrity guests include Nicki Minaj, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Serena Williams.

4. Games

You might not expect an ecommerce marketplace to double as an online arcade, but that’s exactly what HSN.com does. In 2015, they introduced the HSN Arcade: a section of the website where users can play dozens of casual games like solitaire, sudoku, and mahjong.

According to former Chief Executive Mindy Grossman in an interview with MarketWatch, HSN ran a study that showed their core female customers love to play casual games. The numbers back it up: in the first year of launch, the Arcade racked up 1.2 million registered users. As of 2023, the top games each have over 25 million plays.

The games are free to play. But HSN reports that arcade users visit HSN.com 3 times more frequently than other shoppers, and spend 3 times more on the average transaction.

5. Community

Similar to the HSN Arcade, the HSN Community portal is another section of HSN.com that isn’t monetized—but encourages customers to spend time on the website even when they’re not actively shopping.

Community.HSN.com is a bustling online forum—not just a space to ask questions, but a space where shoppers can interact with each other. And they do, in the tens of thousands. One of the most popular conversations has been going on for 9 years (since 2014), migrating to a new thread every couple years when the old one gets too long. (The previous “Conversation 17” hit 17,000 comments before it was restarted. “Conversation 18,” started in January 2023, has 3,500 and counting.)

What’s the conversation about? Well, everything.

The portal has sections for various topics (product categories, Customer Service, etc.), but the “Talk Among Yourselves” section is like any other internet community where longtime members become friends. In these conversational threads, women discuss recent purchases, favorite show hosts—or just talk about their days. “Making pork chops for dinner.” “Hope your hockey team wins!” “Sending good thoughts to your cousin, hope you can see her again soon.”

There’s even a Community Trivia Night every Friday in the HSN Arcade.

The most active HSN viewers aren’t only tuning in to learn about new products. To them, HSN isn’t a TV channel or an ecommerce store. It’s a community. HSN wants to be the audience’s “best girlfriend,” Grossman told Forbes in 2008. “It’s not just a transactional relationship. It becomes an emotional relationship.”

In conclusion

Though in recent years HSN has launched social media marketing campaigns to target younger audiences, their core customer base is still women over 35: a demographic the rest of the retail world often overlooks.

By catering to middle-aged women—taking them seriously; honoring their needs, habits, and desires not just in ways that can be monetized, but also through programs such as the HSN Arcade and HSN Community—HSN remains one of the biggest players in retail and ecommerce.

Want to learn more about what drives TV home shopping and why people buy from HSN/QVC? Read our article: “The TV Shopper, Then and Now[1] .”

Ready to get on air with HSN and reach an audience of millions? Contact EcomHalo to get started.

Julie Massey
Julie Massey

Julie Massey is a dynamic business development leader with a decade of experience and a consistent record of achievement in SaaS, logistics, medical device and pharmaceuticals. Julie spent eight years in healthcare sales gaining broad experience across capital equipment, medical devices, and pharmaceuticals with companies ranging from start-up to Fortune 10. She has worked with such companies as WalkMed Infusion, AmerisourceBergen and Johnson & Johnson.

Julie is a graduate of the University of Alabama, a travel and fitness enthusiast, and currently resides in Fort Lauderdale with her fiancé Ryan and their dog Moose.