From Amazon's Throne to Gen Z's Surprising Shopping Habits; Online Shopping Spree Insight

In the realm of online shopping, Amazon remains the go-to platform for the majority of consumers, except for one group - Generation Z, as per a recent survey conducted by PowerReviews.

The survey emphasizes the significance of brand websites, reviews and ratings, and search engines in the online shopping journey. These factors play a pivotal role in influencing consumer behavior and their decision-making process when researching and purchasing products.

The survey findings reveal that Amazon is the top choice, serving as the starting point for 50 percent of product searches. Google follows closely behind with 31.5 percent of consumers initiating their online purchasing journey through the search engine. Brand websites or Retail capture 14 percent of the market share, while social media platforms and website reviews each account for 2 percent of the initial search destinations.

However, when it comes to Generation Z, their preferences differ from other age groups. Google surpasses Amazon as the preferred starting point for their product searches, with 38 percent of Gen Z choosing Google, compared to 36 percent opting for Amazon. Additionally, Gen Z demonstrates a higher inclination towards social media, with 5 percent of them whose shopping sprees begin on various social media platforms.

Undoubtedly, reviews and ratings hold immense power in influencing consumer decisions. They often carry more weight than factors such as return policies, free shipping, and product price. The survey indicates that 77 percent of participants actively seek out websites that feature reviews. This percentage increases even further for Gen Z, with 87 percent of them relying on reviews, and 81 percent for millennials.

The survey also highlights the significance of comprehensive feedback. Ratings without accompanying reviews are considered untrustworthy by 56 percent of the participants. This highlights the importance of reliable and detailed information to aid consumers in their decision-making process.

When it comes to accessing the ratings or the reviews, Amazon emerges as the primary source for consumers, with a staggering 94 percent of participants referring to reviews on the platform. Retail websites closely follow with 91 percent of consumers relying on them. Search engines, serving as crucial sources of information, capture the attention of 70 percent of consumers. Brand websites, representing the manufacturers, account for 68 percent of consumers seeking reviews. Independent review sites play a smaller role, with 40 percent of consumers referring to them.

Additionally, user-generated photos and videos also carry significant influence. Approximately 60 percent of consumers actively engage with user-generated visual content when exploring new products. The survey reveals that 77 percent of participants place trust in customer-generated visuals, while 53 percent state that videos and photos generated by users impact their purchasing decisions.

Search engines, particularly Google, play a vital role in shaping consumer purchasing decisions. Approximately consumers who consider results present on search engines when making spending choices, come up to 56 percent. Moreover, 63 percent of participants rely on results on search engines to gather information on the items and products they have not bought before, and 50 percent reply and place their trust in these results to make a decision when purchasing.

In conclusion, Amazon continues to dominate as the preferred platform for consumers initiating product searches. reviews and ratings remain paramount in influencing consumer behavior. The survey conducted in March 2023 by PowerReviews involved 8,153 United States consumers, with the majority of participants belonging to the millennial generation at 53 percent, Generation X at 29 percent, Baby Boomers at 10 percent, and Generation Z at 8 percent.
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