ClearPay’s Richard Bayer, EVP, Country Manager and Head of Sales, while on a panel at the Ecommerce Expo, co-located with Technology for Marketing, said:
“GenZ and millennials make over 90% of their purchases using a debit card. This is due to their risk averse nature after witnessing their parents suffer financial loss during the 2008 financial crisis. This has been, further, exacerbated by the cost of living crisis happening in the UK. Financial stability is a genuine concern for them and they would rather not use credit cards for purchases.”
The panel debate which discussed how businesses can adapt to attract the next generation also had contributions by Krista Nordlund, Chief Digital Product Officer at Marks & Spencer, Natalie Chapple, Managing Director & Founder at Glisten Cosmetics and Shakaila Forbes-Bell, Founder, Editor-in-Chief, Fashion is Psychology.
With GenZ and millennials accounting for 25% of the UK’s total retail spend and estimated to grow to 39% by 2030 as they enter the workforce, Shakaila Forbes-Bell gave three reasons why they shop. “First, they shop to create a sense of self and use their purchases to build their self esteem. Secondly, their purchases reflect their allegiance to brands that resonate and help them contribute to their social causes – sustainability and environmental issues primarily. Thirdly, they yearn for social identity. This is why companies such as SheIn are so successful.”
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Krista Nordlund, Chief Digital Product Officer at Marks & Spencer, added:
“Gen Z and millennials have grown up with social media and are constantly surrounded by technology; to get their attention, which lasts just 8-12 seconds, is becoming increasingly competitive. In order to reach these digital consumers, brands that are able to provide a social community as well as drive social causes dear to their hearts will come out as winners.”
“Brands need to be flexible in meeting their consumers’ needs. For instance, payment and returns methods need to be simple and convenient. Consumers also expect their brand experience to be personalised and show the brand is connected to them and their needs. Ultimately, the consumer experience should be as seamless as possible.”
Building a business in the pandemic taught Natalie Chapple a few lessons. Natalie said: “Tone of voice is very important. If your audience knows who you are and what you stand for, they’re likely to connect with you and remain loyal to your brand. Create engaging content such as videos and reels that show your personality. Buy Now Pay Later also helps to convert customers into loyalists.”
Lastly, three themes come forth strongly when it comes to connecting with the younger generation. Richard Bayer said: “The metaverse is increasingly becoming popular and they expect brands to join the trend. So don’t ignore it. A strong omni-channel strategy is also important and brands that are able to deliver this whilst promoting sustainable and environmentally conscious causes will tap nicely into this growing consumer group.”
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