The most successful businesses continue to find creative ways to ensure longevity in the market. They are able to adapt to their customer’s shifting needs and understand the new ways in which their customers are interacting with their business. A crucial thing to consider is that customers are getting younger and younger and so their shopping habits are vastly different from what many business owners have gotten used to. So what is the latest in shopping trends, what should a business owner understand about Gen X, Z and Millennials in comparison with Boomers, and how can brands capitalise on these shifting needs and dynamics?
1. Retail stores and the internet are still top options for finding new products
Social media and the internet remain top platforms for Gen X and Millennials to discover new brands and products. So if these demographics are on your target list then paid adverts, partnerships and strong SEO are a must for getting your brand out there and in front of fresh eyes. Further to this, ensure that your product is in lots of different brick-and-mortar locations and readily available for those who are searching for it.
2. Short-form video VS. sponsored content
Millennials and Gen Xers like to find new brands on social media via sponsored content or adverts. Whereas Gen Zers prefer to discover brands through short-form videos. Depending on your target market you will need to adapt your strategy and create content according to what they are out there consuming.
3. Smartphones stay in focus
Around 75% of customers prefer using their smartphones for shopping online. While 15% prefer to shop on a desktop and 6% prefer to shop on a tablet. This means that your e-commerce sites must be optimised for various platforms and have mobile-responsive product pages with large text, lots of white space and strong calls to action. Remember that if you slow down the user, you risk losing a sale.
4. Pricing and other key factors
Of course, price plays a big role in the customer’s purchasing decision. Over 70% of Gen Zers, Gen Xers, Millenials and Boomers rate price as being the most important factor when deciding whether or not to buy a product. Further to this, quality rates as highly important, with some other surprising factors influencing the buying decision. For instance, 57% of Gen Zers prefer a percentage of proceeds to go to a good cause, 55% of Millenials want to see strong reviews and 55% of Boomers need to see a product’s features and understand the functionality in order to close a sale. If you understand your market you will then know how to position your product so that it becomes more appealing to them.
5. The metaverse and virtual currencies set to grow
You may be surprised to learn that half of those who have ever used the metaverse or bought virtual currency have only done so in the last three months! This means that the metaverse is a rapidly growing space and it is crucial that businesses understand how it works, how consumers are buying in these virtual spaces and whether there is potential for your brand to occupy space there.
The bottom line
The consumer environment is changing at an incredibly rapid pace. As a brand, you need to be invested in studying your specific target market’s shopping behaviour and getting to understand how this is likely to evolve in the coming years. Staying on top of this will give you first-hand evidence of how to continue to meet your customer’s needs and move your business into the future and beyond.