Generation Z likely won’t be the death of brick-and-mortar

NEW YORK — The most digitally savvy generation to date has a soft side for physical stores. 
 
Despite being digital natives, 57% of Generation Z say they prefer to shop in-store rather than online, according to a report from CrowdTwist, a provider of multi-channel loyalty and engagement solutions. 
 
The study, "Generation Z vs. Millennials: The Changing Landscape of Loyalty," found that in order to encourage loyalty among younger generations, brands must build personalized experiences, facilitate engagement across all channels, and provide a wide range of opportunities to earn loyalty program points. The study also finds a growing opportunity for non-traditional industries such as beauty and entertainment to adopt loyalty programs.
 
Key findings include:
  • 57% of Generation Z prefer shopping in-store: Despite being digital natives, Generation Z prefer to shop in-store rather than online, and a slightly larger percentage of them compared to Millennials prefer to do so. 
  • Seventy-five percent of Millennials and Generation Z are willing to share personal data in exchange for a personalized experience.
  • Sixty-three percent of Generation Z are active in at least one loyalty program. And 71% of Millennials are also active in at least one program. 
  • Generation Z consumers rank beauty and media & entertainment in the top five categories for loyalty programs.  
  • Loyalty programs provide a competitive advantage: The majority (64%) of both Generation Z and Millennials could be persuaded to shop with brand if they have a loyalty program.
  • Almost 40% of Generation Z ranked playing games as their preferred way of earning points as part of a loyalty program. Generation Z are also almost 50% more likely than Millennials to write a review for a brand in exchange for points. 
"Loyalty programs remain one of the biggest drivers of brand choice across both generations," said Scott Matthews, CEO of CrowdTwist. "In fact, the younger generations are driving the success of loyalty programs. In order for brands to succeed in meeting the expectations of these young consumers, they must adopt a data-driven, omnichannel approach to customer loyalty."
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