Diving into the deep pool of customer data can unearth some valuable insights into shopping behavior and attitudes.
A recent survey of around 12,000 consumers reveals the reality of ecommerce shoppers and shows some surprising trends – which we’ve excavated and are going to demonstrate to you.
They refer to the brand loyalty of Gen Zers, differences between ecommerce and in-store, and the role of social media. So let’s excavate some of these more interesting myths that have many brands and retailers caught in the wrong direction.
Myth one: ecommerce on social media is just for young generations
Of course younger generations are more digital literate and more of them spend time online. Yet they’re not the only tech-savvy generation. In fact, the over 40s are increasingly adept at social media and particularly when it comes to browsing and shopping online.
Whether it’s Facebook, Instagram, or TikTok, multiple generations have been raised on social media; 85% of Gen Zers buy from social media posts. But many of the older generations have been turning to ecommerce particularly when stores closed and digital became the only option.
Around 6 in 10 Gen Xers (those born between the mid 1960s to the early 1980s) have purchased a product after first seeing it on social media. Almost 1 in 10 actually make regular purchases through social media apps. Even Baby Boomers are getting in on it, with 1 in 5 shopping directly on social media apps.
So despite the deadlines fixating on Gen Zers’ use of social media, it would be a mistake to neglect every other generation who make up a large part of online consumers.
Myth two: pandemic-fueled ecommerce will make the store redundant
Despite the rapid bursts of ecommerce over the last year and a half, the store remains a core component of the consumer experience. And although many stores have permanently closed from the tough pandemic effects, the truth is that the physical and the digital are becoming closer and closer.
In pre-pandemic times, 85% of all retail purchases were made in store – 15% from ecommerce. Yet depending on the industry it was much higher. For example, when it came to grocery shopping, a huge 97% came from stores. Contrast that to this year, when 20% of consumers have said that it’s likely that they’ll buy groceries online.
Meanwhile in other industries, digital usage is even higher. Take apparel and footwear for example, where 34% of consumers said that they plan to do their clothes shopping online through platforms such as Amazon, Instacart, and Facebook Marketplace.
However, while the younger generations are tied to digital when it comes to searching and buying products, they still decide to head down to the store to purchase and return items. Meanwhile, around 1/3 of Gen Zers relied on the physical store to take back their online purchases.
Today, the store is much more than a place of purchase. It is a place that expands the shopping experience. The trick for brands and retailers is to anchor the digital and physical; to make the two channels seamless and make unique experiences for engagement. As an example, retailers can encourage online shoppers to come in store to save on their shipping.
What’s more, 67% of consumers go to a store to return a product yet come out with another product. And so when consumers walk into a store with no intention of buying, it’s a chance for the store to promote its new products and engagement with this type of consumer.
Myth three: Gen Zers are not loyal to brands
Generation Z gets a lot of flack – they’re lazier, more entitled, and lack self-criticism – yet much of it is unfair. This extends to the shopping attitudes. Because after all, when it comes to loyalty programs, every generation likes a good deal. And compared to the older generations, Gen Zers are twice as likely to want brand events and a sense of community.
For Baby Boomers, their preferences are pretty much set in stone. For 75% of Baby Boomers, quality is the most important factor; for Generation Z, they are more demanding, preferring a combination of quality and discounts as well as a broader view of sustainability and convenience.
Shopping journeys are no longer simple. Rather, it’s an interconnected experience from the physical store to the digital space. Remembering that all generations are spread out across ecommerce and engaging in all generations is a valuable thing to keep in mind for brands.
PS: ArganoUV is one of the world’s leading Salesforce Commerce Cloud (Demandware) development & strategy teams. Contact us to see how we can work together.