For the most part, the customer experience of e-commerce hasn’t changed in the past decade or so.
It’s an efficient way to buy something you know you want, just like 'search' is great if you know what you're looking for. Something the industry calls mission shopping, but it’s hampered by the challenges of promoting product discovery and impulse purchases.
It's all still very heavily biased on the 'transaction'.
Winning over Gen-Z will be crucial to many brands’ and retailers’ post-pandemic plans: the consumer group currently accounts for 40 percent of global consumers and $150 billion in spending power in the United States alone, according to McKinsey & Company.
What’s more, Bain & Company estimates that Gen-Z spending could make up 40 percent of the global market for personal luxury goods by 2035.
The last roaring twenties, just like this next one will be counted as a decade that changed the world and redefined what was to 'what is'.
Assuming the global vaccine initiative does the job we have all hoped for, national lockdowns are a thing of the now (short term) past, WFH is here to stay, and the logistics industry can recruit and train enough new drivers to satisfy not just consumer demand but also sector and supply chain critical product the retail consumer of today, and most definitely tomorrow is currently sat at home wondering WTF just happened to the world.
They went through this crisis all whilst having enjoyed home streamed media, video games, food deliveries, and communicating with peer groups via social media - highlighting that relatable entertaining content draws people to brands in the same way 1950's drew eyeballs to those sponsored 'soaps'.
As the millennial cohort, born approximately between 1997 and 2012, continues to join the workforce and gains financial autonomy, along with the up and coming Gen Z they are set to power even higher rates of consumption once an economic recovery takes hold.
These generations are intolerant of your 20th Century homogenised store retailing, they don't see themselves as part of your 'funnel', and they certainly won't put up with your intrusive advertising strategies.
Covid‑19 has supercharged the threat e-commerce poses to brick-and-mortar chains by accelerating its adoption—U.S. online sales in the second quarter rose 45% from a year earlier, clocking three times recent growth rates.
As this pandemic subsides, and subside it will, my guess is those that understood how best to 'leverage' social media with a strategic approach to 'social commerce' , along with other consumer engagement techniques such as 'live streaming' will be the brands of the future.
Yet Gen-Z is also a misunderstood generation, one that is both underestimated and overrated in equal measure. Companies targeting this next generation of consumer need to be able to see through the stereotypes and challenge received wisdom. Learning how to listen, what to pay attention to, and how to incorporate these insights within your strategy without overwhelming your customers or compromising your offering will become increasingly important in a crowded marketplace