Brands in Germany may want to shift some of their focus — particularly in touting e-commerce — from the youth to the elderly, given recent findings from Mintel.
Gen Z Germans are expected to have a particularly tough holiday season. Nearly half of them say money is going to be tighter than usual this Christmas, compared to just over a third of German consumers as a whole, according to Mintel’s latest German Lifestyles research.
Meanwhile, 44% of German Gen Zs and 29% of German Millennials are trying to add to their savings as a result of the pandemic, yet more than 60% of both groups confirm they haven’t been able to since the outbreak.
“After the financial crisis in 2009, the COVID-19 pandemic is the second crisis hitting the Millennial generation within one decade, and the first one Gen Z has to face in the most formative years of their life. While some have started their first job, some became unemployed or were furloughed, putting them under financial and emotional pressure,” explains Mainga Hachibiti, lifestyles analyst at Mintel.
“Given the circumstances, it seems logical to try and put money aside. However, this translates to a loss of consumer spending, which could have negative consequences for the German economy. To encourage consumer spending, companies need to take action both from a marketing and pricing perspective. They need to clearly demonstrate the value of their products and services and work on high-quality innovations meeting specific consumer needs, such as wellbeing.”
Just over a quarter of Germans are shopping more online since the pandemic, the Mintel report reveals. Traditionally, younger consumers have been more enthusiastic about e-commerce, but as a result of lockdowns, older shoppers have increasingly embraced it. Almost one in five Baby Boomers are shopping more online since the start of the outbreak, up from 13% in April 2020. Furthermore, 43% of this age group is trying to do most of this year’s Christmas shopping online.
COVID-19 catalyzed such changes, Hachibiti notes. She notes that the rise in e-commerce among Baby Boomers relates to their greater vulnerability to COVID-19, but that this behavior can become a habit for them. This brings opportunities for brands.
“As many elderly people live relatively remotely in rural areas, brands can support them in their daily lives through online services. This could prove especially valuable for the online grocery sector. By offering easy-to-follow guidelines, transparent terms and conditions, and trustworthy customer-friendly service, companies can meet older consumers’ needs.”
Access Mintel’s German Lifestyles report here.