Younger shoppers still heading to High Street
Written by Hannah McGrath
Younger generations are growing frustrated with online shopping and heading back the High Street, with 60 per cent of 18-34 year olds valuing the in-store experience.
A study of 2,002 UK adults, commissioned by design agency Foolproof, found that despite the general perception that Generation Z and Millennial shoppers live and shop online, over a quarter of the so-called ‘digital generation’ aged 18-24, and a further 30 per cent of 24-34 year olds, said they preferred to shop in-store as an opportunity to socialise with family and friends.
The greatest motivator for younger generations to head to the High Street was checking the quality of purchases, with 47 per cent of 18-24 year olds and 49 per cent of 25-34 year olds citing this as their top reason.
However, when it comes to shopping for clothes, older generations are far more likely to head in-store to try items on. More than half (51 per cent) of 35-44 year olds, similar percentages (49 per cent) of 45-54 year olds, and 53 per cent of 55+ year olds, said they prefer to buy clothes in a bricks and mortar store.
Despite the enduring attraction of physical stores, the survey also reflected the benefits of online shopping for a growing number of consumers, with 42 per cent of 18-24 year olds saying convenience was the biggest driver for shopping online, along with 44 per cent of 25-34 year olds.
Among the top grievances with the High Street experience were crowds and queuing, with 57 per cent of 25-34 year olds saying this deterred them. One in five said they disliked carrying shopping around, and 36 per cent were put off by travelling and parking.
Peter Ballard, co-founder of Foolproof, said: “What we found was surprising and runs against the grain of assumptions about digital being the inevitable future for retailers.
“The fact is that our generations of the future still see a place for the in-store shopping experience, but retailers need to create an experience that plays to the strengths of in-store shopping whilst fixing the pain points that are driving people away.”