With nearly 5 billion social media users in the world, social commerce revenue is expected to hit $492 billion in 2023². But is social media meeting consumer needs and expectations and providing an ideal social commerce shopping experience? In order to better understand how the Next Generation (Gen Z and Millennials) are engaging with social commerce, Snapchat and Havas Media Network partnered together to determine how to better deliver shopping experiences that cater to this generation’s needs.
A multi-modal study was conducted in seven markets (France, Germany, India, Mexico, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and United States) and over 28,500 13-34 year olds were surveyed. The study revealed some key expectations and behavior from GenZ and millennials when it comes to commerce:
- Social dominates Discovery/Inspiration: 88% of Next Gen respondents use social media to discover new products and 44% use it to evaluate items for consideration and purchase.
- Community is integral: 85% of respondents include friends and family in their shopping journey through direct messages, tagging in posts, and attending live shopping events together.
- Dynamic engagement makes a difference: Over one third of Next Gen consumers have used augmented reality (AR) and approximately 3 out of 5 have attended a virtual shopping event – with 61% of respondents more likely to purchase a product after an AR experience, and over half making a purchase during a live shopping event.
- 63% of Daily Snapchatters even report that having a virtual try-on feature is key to driving conversion!
- Seamlessness rules: At 60%, the biggest engagement drop-off across the social commerce journey is from the discovery phase to the purchasing phase.
- Technology needs humanity: 81% of Next Gen utilize the AI/chatbot feature, as it provides a ‘shopping buddy’ that delivers on ease and personalization.
These key learnings lend themselves to six overarching principles that brands can use to create meaningful social shopping experiences for Next Gen:
- Be My Sidekick: Pursue Personalization: Excellent customer experiences incorporate the human touch – whether through personalized guidance through the buying process, tailored buying suggestions and consultation, or stellar support following a purchase.
- Keep My Inner Circle Within Reach: Action Authenticity: Friends and family are a powerful marketing tool to expand a customer base – Next Gen carefully chooses who they interact with based on transparency, authenticity, and shared values.
- Engage In My Blended Reality: Utilize Ubiquity: Leverage technology to create ‘real-life’ shopping moments that transition seamlessly between the virtual and real world – fulfilling this cohort’s expectation for engaging and futuristic experiences.
- Instill Confidence: Tackle Trust: A secure platform builds credibility by delivering clear and relevant information and offering connection to real people, instilling confidence to make a purchase with support from discovery to post purchase.
- Incorporate Moments of Fun: Emphasize Entertainment: Lean into the growing ‘live shoptainment’ space for more holistically engaging shopping experiences that inspire and entertain.
- Smooth It Out: Chase Convenience: A seamless experience provides consumer ease across the entire shopping journey, increasing repeat sales and creating brand advocates.
Download the full Playbook here for complete findings and insights.