US – Some 64% of American consumers prefer to shop in bricks-and-mortar stores, according to a new report.
According to the Evolution of Retail: 2017 Gen Z Shopper Report – an analysis of the shopping habits of 1,500 Millennial and Generation Z smartphone users – respondents like shopping in physical stores because they like to see products first-hand (67%), enjoy browsing (51%) and enjoy being able to take products home without having to wait for delivery (45%).
Generation Z consumers are more likely to ask a store associate for advice than other demographics (28% versus 21% of all respondents) and prefer personalised in-store experiences (26% versus 19%).
The report also highlights the motivations behind Generation Z consumers’ shopping habits. Some 53% said free wifi motivates them to shop in retail stores, while 30% and 26% cited retail apps that enable them to order products online and pick them up in-store and free charging stations as key motivators, respectively.
While members of Generation Z still visit physical stores, these visual-first, always-on consumers regularly use their smartphones in-store. Some 43% of Generation Z respondents said they use their smartphone to compare prices in-store, 43% use them to take photographs of products in order to remember them later, 42% use them to share the shopping experience with family and friends, and 35% use them to look up email promotions.
The use of smartphone apps in-store is more common among Generation Z consumers than other demographics. Some 40% of Generation Z respondents said they use Snapchat in-store, compared to 15% of other respondents. Generation Z respondents are also more likely to send text messages in-store than other respondents, at 50% and 39%, respectively.
As hyper-connected Generation Z consumers become more demanding in terms of what they expect from retail spaces, physical stores will need to adapt their business models to cater for their digital-first mindset. For more on the future of retail, buy our Retail Futures Report 2017.