Can retailers keep up with Gen Z’s digital savviness?
While more digitally-savvy, Gen Z is expected to differ from Millennials in a few other ways, according to an American Express survey.
A study of 1,027 Gen Y (ages 23 to 37) and Gen Z consumers (ages 16 to 22) by Forrester Consulting identified differences within three key themes:
- Starting From a Trusted Place: When compared to Gen Y, Gen Z cares more deeply about the reputation and image of the brands they use (50 percent vs. 42 percent). Gen Z was twice as likely as Gen Y to stop using a product, brand or service due to responsiveness on social media (21 percent vs. nine percent).
- On the Go, On their Terms: Compared to Gen Y, Gen Z is 22 percent more likely to prefer in-app notifications to receive offers, incentives and sales notifications. They are also 23 percent more likely to prefer interacting via social media to receive offers, incentives and sales notifications. More than twice as many Gen Z consumers ranked using text/SMS messaging, searching online resources and talking over the phone with an automated system (i.e., not speaking with a customer service rep but rather using automated menus) as their top three preferred customer service channels to solve a problem.
- Tech-Driven Loyalty: Gen Z respondents were more likely than Gen Y to become disloyal to a brand due to poorly designed mobile features, slow response during online chat for sales or customer service issues, or poor features/responsiveness on social media. Gen Z was two times more interested than Gen Y in features that embody instant gratification such as one-hour delivery made by drones, the ability to purchase products or services via chat apps or social media, personalized experiences via bots and AI, and the ability to pay using a watch or other wearable device.
“To capture Gen Z’s attention, business leaders have to go beyond simply thinking digitally,” Forrester concluded in the report. “They need to become customer obsessed and deliver experiences founded on the pillars of empathy and delivering utility such as immediacy, personalization, security, and entertainment.”
- Digital, Decisive and Drone-Ready: American Express Study Shows Gen Z’s Customer Experience Expectations – American Express
- Raising The Bar – How Gen Z Expectations Are Reshaping Brand Experiences – American Express
DISCUSSIONS: How do you think Gen Z will differ from Gen Y as shoppers as they reach their peak spending years? In what aspects of the shopper experience may retailers likely have to double-down on investments?