Nearly half (49%) of Gen-Z shoppers say in-store shopping makes them feel anxious. That’s according to new data from In-Store Digital Engagement company M-Cube, which surveyed 18-24 year olds in the UK to discover younger generations’ attitudes towards the high-street.
The findings revealed that 47% feel more anxious shopping in-store now than before the pandemic, while 49% said it has always made them feel anxious. When shopping on the high-street, almost half of Gen-Zs (48%) don’t like speaking to customer service staff, and would prefer to use digital channels to access the information they need.
Digital versus physical
The research also highlighted the comparative attitudes towards online and in-store shopping, with the majority of respondents saying they prefer to shop online (54%). When asked why, 73% said it’s quicker and easier to find products and they enjoyed the convenience of buying anytime, anywhere (68%).
Of the 46% who prefer shopping in-store, 71% of those surveyed said this is because they like having the product instantly, while 66% said they like to see and feel the products before they buy. Enjoying the experience was also identified as a key reason (49%).
Improving the high-street experience
Sixty per cent of Gen-Zs think in-store experiences need to be improved. When asked how this can be achieved, the majority of respondents said physical stores need to become more of a social space. This was closely followed by having more QR codes/access to quick information (44%) and better music and lighting (29%).
Alexios Blanos, UK Business Director, M-Cube commented: “To get Gen-Zs back into physical stores, retailers need to make it more of an experience, the products alone are no longer enough to sway customers. Younger generations are known for being digital natives, who enjoy the speed and convenience that ecommerce offers. That’s why its crucial brands bring the advantages of the online world into the physical stores, and create a social space that Gen-Zs are excited about.”