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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : August 26, 2013

Youngsters believe future of the high street store is as a showroom

A five-year study begun in 2011 to monitor a group of youngsters' attitudes towards and use of technology reveals the inevitable future of the British high street as collection of showrooms.

by Helen Leggatt

amaze_gen_4 (2)_tcm22-4714.jpgStores in the UK have had to close down through recession and, says Amaze, "due to massive changes in how people use technology". According to the findings to date in their five year "Amaze Generation" study of 10-15 years olds and their use of technology, the high street has little chance of recovering in the wake of technology's grip.

Instead, a wider choice, convenience and the ease with which mobile and Internet shopping can be conducted will lead to the inevitable - a high street, not of stores in which purchase decisions will be made and carried out, but of showrooms in which browsers can find products they want and then use technology to have shipped to their door.

The high street will be "quieter", say the youngsters, adding that "most shopping will be done online due to people being lazy and thinking it's easier to do it at home. There will be lots of fashion stores around and expensive designers".

"The shopping habits of the Amaze Generation has undergone a revolution, with shopping online clearly gaining in popularity," says Natalie Gross, CEO at Amaze. "Whilst the use of mobile for shopping has yet to take hold with this generation, it will be extremely interesting to see how this develops given the overall increasing popularity of the device. This savvy, technologically connected age group are clear about what they want - ease of use, convenience and choice."

Recent research in the U.S. has found that the combination of growing smartphone use, consumers' determination to find the lowest price and the ability to make purchases on smartphones while in-store is resulting in brick and mortar retailers losing buyers to savvy e-tailers like Amazon in unprecedented numbers.

Tags: demographics, mobile shopping, online shopping, retail trends, showrooming trends, technology, young adult

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