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Supermarkets should offer in-store shopping apps, speedy delivery options and engaging social media content to attract the next generation of consumer, research by Shoppercentric has found.

Generation Z are frequent, impulsive shoppers who expect to be impressed at “each touchpoint” of the experience, found a study of 512 online interviews and 20 in-depth profiles of 15 to 24-year-olds.

The majority are using their smartphones in-store and 53% of interviewees felt this helped them make more informed purchase decisions.

Interviewees also put a strong emphasis on speedy delivery of online orders, with 20% naming same-day and next-day delivery as one of their top three priorities for internet shopping.

And, unsurprisingly, Generation Z was found to be highly engaged with social media. Eight in 10 reported using Facebook, 49% used YouTube, 41% frequented Twitter and 50% said they were on Instagram - a channel often neglected by older shoppers. Over a quarter used YouTube not just for entertainment, but to get ideas and recommendations.

Despite the digital focus, the generation isn’t shunning physical stores altogether. Half felt going shopping was a fun way to spend time with friends and family - a higher proportion than older shoppers - and 49% use the displays for ideas on what to buy.

The findings suggest the major supermarkets are on track with the rollout of in-store shopping apps such as Waitrose’s Quick Check and Tesco’s PayQwiq, plus the increasing provision of same-day delivery slots, which Sainsbury’s CEO Mike Coupe branded the future “currency of the market”.

Danielle Pinnington, MD of Shoppercentric, said Generation Z shoppers could give “a real pointer as to where the future of retail lies”.

“Each touchpoint with these shoppers needs to be a positive experience and reflective of the brands’ tone of voice and values whilst remembering that this is a generation that enjoys shopping, so retailers will need to deliver to that brief and make it fun both instore and online,” she said.