Gen Z shoppers head instore

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AMPAMP Capital has released the 11th edition of its annual Recommended Retail Practice (RRP) report, which has found that Gen Zs, the ‘Future Shoppers’1 of Australia, favour shopping in-store over online shopping.The report, From A to Gen Z: Shopping with the Future Generation2, found that 87 per cent of Australian

The report, From A to Gen Z: Shopping with the Future Generation2, found that 87 per cent of Australian Future Shoppers like or love shopping in-store compared to 79 per cent who like or love to shop online.

The report confirms that the future of traditional shopping in bricks-and-mortar stores remains strong but retailers need to adapt their in-store experience to continue to engage with their changing consumers, particularly the tech-savvy Future Shoppers. Engaging with the internet is a key opportunity for driving
stronger sales in-store as the platform plays an influential role throughout Gen Z’s entire shopping experience.

Mark Kirkland, Managing Director of AMP Capital Shopping Centres, said: “The findings of the 2017 RRP report are significant as it confirms that the future of retail is bright, with a range of new opportunities at our fingertips.

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"The research highlights the importance of developing fun, social experiences in-store and the opportunities that emerge once brands and retailers align their online and offline offerings. AMP Capital’s RRP report also confirms Australians are ethical shoppers, who are willing to invest in sustainable brands, and that male Future Shoppers are the new trend setters when it comes to fashion," Mr Kirkland said.

“It also provides useful insights that can be shared across our industry, inspiring innovation and creation of engaging experiences that attract both Current and Future Shoppers and ensure the continued success of our sector.”

The RRP report identified four key themes:
1. Don’t panic! Traditional shopping is not dead
Despite the lure of online shopping, Future Shoppers still prefer to shop in-store more than Current Shoppers. They’re social creatures, drawn to the face-to-face, touch-and-feel experience that in-store shopping provides. 53 per cent of Future Shoppers feel more confident when shopping with others compared to just
27 per cent of Current Shoppers.
2. Online and bricks and mortar work together
For time-poor Future Shoppers, the internet plays an important role in their shopping experience before and during their in-store visits, creating strong opportunities for in-store sales. 61 per cent of Future Shoppers research while in-store compared to 36 per cent of Current Shoppers, while 63 per cent of Future Shoppers use retailers’ wish list functions, compared to 43 per cent of Current Shoppers.
3. Don’t just sell me something, mean something to me
Future and Current Shoppers are both highly engaged with global issues and value strong ethics and companies with a purpose that goes beyond just selling.  Just below 70 per cent of both Future and Current Shoppers prefer brands that give back to society. 59 per cent of Future Shoppers agreed they would pay more for sustainable products compared to 48 per cent of Current Shoppers.
It’s increasingly important for retailers to adopt an ethical, sustainable and authentic approach in supporting the global issues that matter most to Australians today.
4. Male Future Shoppers are a whole new ballgame
Last year, the RRP report revealed that men love shopping. This year, 46 per cent of male Future Shoppers have said they are more interested in staying ahead of popular trends than 36 per cent of their female counterparts.
Male Future Shoppers prefer to shop in groups, with most stating that shopping is a social experience (51 per cent) versus only 36 per cent of male Current Shoppers. 56 per cent of male Future Shoppers are more confident when shopping with others compared to 29 per cent of male Current Shoppers - it's therefore important for brands and retailers to acknowledge the power of the male retail market, which provides a growing opportunity for them.

AMP 2Mr Kirkland said: “The continued popularity of shopping in-store provides a positive outlook for retailers. It’s important that, as an industry, we constantly evolve to adapt to the current trends that engage our Future Shoppers in order to stay relevant. It’s vital that retailers and shopping centres engage with the digital world to deliver a seamless online and offline experience that will create new and exciting avenues to connect with their customers.

“Trailblazing Australian retailers such as Mecca Maxima and Culture Kings have captured the attention of Future Shoppers by creating a personalised customer experience that’s exclusive to in-store. These are just a few representations of the future of retail although we look forward to seeing more bold ideas from retailers within this innovative space.”

The 2017 Recommended Retail Practice Report can be downloaded here.

*Future Shoppers are used to refer to adult Gen Zs between the ages of 18 – 22 years. Current Shoppers are used to reference the rest of the Australian population aged 23 and over.
**The Recommended Retail Practice Report, titled, From A to Gen Z: Shopping with the Future Generation saw 1,710 people from Australia and New Zealand take part in the nationally representative research, three paired immersions in-situ at Sydney’s Macquarie Centre and 86 Gen Zs log online to collate and confirm the findings.