Tech savvy younger generation already shaping consumer demand  

High expectations and a willingness to pay more for a tailored service, despite a smaller income – this is what the average ‘Millennial’ consumer of today is demanding according to the findings of the recent Metapack Delivering Consumer Choice: 2015 State of eCommerce Delivery research.

Retailers and marketers will need to adjust their services and their approach to customers if they are to satisfy the emerging cohort of shoppers aged between 18 and 26. This group, termed Millennials, are already making their mark as a disruptive generation expecting fast, intuitive and seamless shopping experiences and, crucially, a wide range of choices, particularly with regard to delivery.

The survey, which was conducted amongst 3000 shoppers adults in the UK, US, Spain, France, Germany and the Netherlands, found that 78% of the Millennials age group had bought goods from one retailer over another because they provided more delivery options. 69% also said they’d be happy to pay more for a better or more convenient delivery option.

“This age group is less tolerant than previous generations,” said Kees de Vos, Chief Product Officer at Metapack. “If retailers want to secure the loyalty of Millennials, they need to start now and ensure a first-class quality of service and a wide range of options are available online. Being digital natives they are accustomed to speed and responsiveness and this translates into their shopping and browsing habits as much as any other part of their lives.”

The survey found that Millennials make their feelings plain if they experience poor service. 50% of this group, higher than any other, has broadcast a negative delivery experience on social media and they are more likely never to shop with that retailer again. They also use social media to search for peer reviews about which retailers to avoid, and 61% reported that a bad review about delivery on social media would influence their decision whether or not to shop with a retailer. Retailers should also be aware that Millennials are using social media to elicit a response from a retailer – 28% have   received a goods refund following a social media complaint, while 22% have been given a voucher or discount.

When it comes to what delivery options they frequently use, 85% of Millennials said they chose delivery to their door, 33% opted to collect purchases in store and 29% from a local shop or pick up point. What they don’t want is to be kept waiting – 44% of this age group said that they’d failed to complete an online order because delivery would take too long.

Same day deliveries are popular with almost a quarter (23%) of the Millennial shoppers, more than double those aged 39-52. Despite lower incomes, 60% are prepared to pay for this privilege if they can get what they want delivered quickly. They are also more likely to pay more for goods because the delivery options are better and more convenient

“What it comes down to is choice,” continued de Vos. “They are more accommodating if they can see the value in waiting, but if they want something urgently, they’re prepared to pay for it, even if they are earning less than other age group. What they also demand is to be kept informed – 80% of our younger respondents said that it’s important that a retailer communicates where their parcel is, and they will check-in online to track it. This is what the future of eCommerce and delivery looks like, so retailers and marketers need to take note.”