The young people in Russia are certainly not going to abandon shopping in the real world, despite their interest in online retail. 26% of youth respondents (aged 16-21) thought that in the future they would research and shop in store more than they currently do. This is significantly higher than the adult segment at 13%. 22-65 year olds, on the other hand, say they will use physical stores less (31% vs. 21%).
Shopping is a social experience for young people The youngest respondents in our study were more likely to say they will shop socially more often in the future compared to their adult counterparts (23% vs. 16%). So the stereotype of the “internet generation” hiding away in their rooms is not proving to be true in Russia.
Youths like to research first, then visit stores informed Youths prefer to “webroom” – research an item online before going in-store. 73% do this as opposed to 44% who “showroom” – research in-store before buying online. The older age group also prefer to webroom – 78% do this as opposed to 53% who showroom.
How consumers in Russia divide purchasing between store and online According to our survey, youths are significantly more likely to only shop at online stores that also have physical shops, and are less likely than adults to say it does not matter if the retailer has physical shops. So having a physical presence matters more to youths than to older people. In fact, 14% of the youths surveyed stated that they do not buy online at all.
In Russia, categories like grocery and personal care are mostly shopped for in-store. While almost half of fashion shoppers purchase online, few substitute in-store shopping with online shopping completely. Consumers’ preference for shopping for groceries in-store is mainly driven by the desire to see products before purchasing them and to get them quicker. For fashion, shopping in-store is considered important by consumers because it allows them to try/see products and to get them sooner.
When buying Personal Electronic products, youths were significantly more likely than older shoppers to shop exclusively in-store (44% vs. 30%). The difference is larger when it comes to buying mobile phones, where 60% of youths compared to 52% of the adult group said they bought these items in store. This is partly because receiving advice and experiencing the brand in person is key for them for this product category.
What devices are used for online research and shopping? Of the devices used to research a purchase, tablet and desktop usage is similar between youths and adults. That is with the exception of fashion shopping where the use of mobile phones is slightly youth skewed. When it comes to paying, the large majority of online transactions take place via a desktop or laptop, although overall most payments take place in-store
Integrated offers are important for younger shoppers The main barrier to shopping online in Russia is the desire to see and handle the product being purchased, as well as the reliability of delivery – with young Russians significantly more likely to state this.
Youths in Russia have slightly higher expectations that they will get in-store support for online purchases, and they are also more likely to say they would only buy in-store (15% vs. 9%). They are, however, less likely to say that an integrated offer is a reason to choose a specific store (20% vs. 32% of older shoppers).
What will matter to Russian shoppers in the future?
Youths and adults alike think home delivery will play a more important role than today, as will online, Click & Collect and loyalty cards. Mobile and apps are seen as less important. Russian youths are the most interested in customizable products – with more than half saying this (53% vs. 42% of older respondents). Purchasing in-store, Click & Collect, contactless payment and mobile payment were all significantly more important to those aged 22-65.
About the Global Youth Retail study
Global Youth Retail study is a GfK proprietary study carried out in 10 countries (US, UK, Germany, Italy, South Korea, Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa). The total sample of 7,266 people includes a boosted sample of c. 5,000 16–21 year olds. The study explores attitudes and behaviors across grocery, personal care, fashion, mobile and personal electronics.
Global Youth Retail is a key component of GfK Future of Retail – market insights we provide based on best intelligence about the demand and expectations of today’s shoppers across all categories and markets. Bringing together sales facts, panel data and shopper research, we help generate the precise and future focused retail strategy you need for sustainable business success.