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Are You Meeting Your Customer’s Expectations?

2 Mins read

Two recent surveys from GoDaddy reveal that small businesses are losing potential customers because they are not meeting the expectations of Gen Z and millennial consumers.

The disconnect is large—91% of small business owners believe they offer a “convenient online experience” to customers. Yet only 21% of consumers (19% of Gen Z) agree.

The issue is that while the business owners say their top target market is Gen Z and millennials, their business practices cater to the older generations. However, all is not lost. Gen Z (73%) and millennials (75%) say they’d shop more often at small businesses if they offered the same conveniences as the larger big box chain stores.

Here’s what Gen Z and millennials want:

Alternate Ways to Pay

  • 73% of Gen Z and 83% of millennials say that “Buy Online, Pickup In-Store” (BOPIS) is important to them, but only 34% of small businesses offer it
  • 85% of Gen Z and 82% of millennials want small businesses to accept contactless digital payments, yet 27% of small businesses don’t accept digital wallet payments

Online Shopping

  • 90% of consumers think it’s important for small businesses to offer free shipping, yet 38% don’t offer free shipping
  • 89% of consumers say it’s important for small businesses to have a website, but 24% of companies don’t have one—this is the stat that continues to amaze me. It is simply unacceptable for a business to not have a website today.
  • 55% of Gen Z and 61% of millennials say it’s very important that they can buy directly from a business’s website, but 28% of small businesses don’t have an online store
  • 65% of consumers are more likely to purchase if they knew the personal story of the business, yet 20% of small businesses don’t share their stories

Social Media

  • 80% of Gen Z and 75% of millennials) believe it’s important small businesses have storefronts linked to their social pages for easy shopping, but small businesses mainly use their social accounts for brand awareness—only 25% sell physical products, and 19% sell digital products over social media
  • 41% of Gen Z and 43% of millennials follow businesses on social media for discounts, but 47% of small businesses don’t offer discount codes when consumers follow them on social media

The irony is that 91% of small businesses think staying current with tech innovations is important, but they’re not meeting the high expectations of today’s increasingly tech-savvy consumer base.

Part of the problem may be that small business owners are confused by the different generational preferences regarding the convenient experiences consumers want.

Buying Habits

When using a debit or credit card, the percentage of consumers that prefer to use Tap to Pay:

  • Gen Z – 50%
  • Millennials – 31%
  • Gen X – 23%
  • Boomers – 18%

Is it important for small businesses to accept contactless digital payments?

  • Gen Z – 85%: yes
  • Millennials – 82%: yes
  • Gen X – 67%: yes; 33% no
  • Boomers – 40%: yes; 60%: no

Is it important to make purchases directly from a business’s website?

  • Gen Z – 55%: yes
  • Millennials – 61%: yes
  • Gen X – 50%: yes, “very important”
  • Boomers – 41%: yes, “very important”

Is it for small businesses to link their storefronts to their social pages?

  • Gen Z – 80%: yes
  • Millennials–75%: yes
  • Gen X – 50%: yes; 50%: no
  • Boomers– 29%: yes; 71%: no

Consumer behaviors have changed rapidly in the past few years. The younger generations are massive in size and in or entering prime spending years. It’s a must for small businesses to work smarter and embrace the technology that gives consumers what they want.

Expectations stock image by

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