In an instant gratification world, Generation Z values having several shipping options that work around their lifestyle.

Gen Z, described as consumers aged 20 and younger, currently make up more than a quarter of the world’s population. They represent a unique subset of people who were born into an entirely digital world. Their consumption is driven by competition and the fear of missing out, so the ability to shop on any device through omnichannel selling is expected. They are conditioned to have high expectations and have no problem abandoning a cart at checkout due to lack of sufficient shipping options.

Although Gen Z might have the shortest attention span compared to previous generations, they also have higher expectations when it comes to convenience and shipping. They are much more frugal and cost-sensitive when it comes to shipping than the average consumer. They place free shipping at a high premium and not only are they in a hurry to receive their packages, but they are prepared to add more items to their order to cross that free shipping threshold. In fact, 70% of Gen Z will increase their basket size solely to meet the ‘free shipping’ spend threshold versus only 64% of average consumers. This means higher revenue for the company, and a happy customer with free shipping – win/win.

Tip: To develop customer loyalty, consider setting up a system to reward return customers with premium shipping options or introduce spend thresholds for free shipping. This encourages users to come back to the same site for their future purchases and leads to lifetime customer bases.

But what can Gen Z spend?

Even though Gen Z is only in the beginning of their adulthood and earning potential, by 2020, Gen Z will make up 40% of the world’s consumers, and that represents a lot of buying power. Many show serious interest in crowd-sourcing same-day delivery, real-time delivery tracking and subscription services for everyday essentials like pet toys, makeup, meal plans and clothing. These services often utilize premium shipping and delivery services as a membership perk, and Gen Z sees this as a huge convenience over brick and mortar shopping.

“With technology constantly evolving but some shopping habits remaining the same, retailers need to be agile enough to serve both needs,” said Matthew Shay, NRF president and CEO. “Retailers are constantly focused on experimenting with innovations both online and in-store to stay relevant to evolving consumer demand.” In fact, while tablets and laptops lend themselves as the most popular online shopping devices, Gen Z’s significantly higher use of mobile phones indicates the rising importance of m-commerce, and retailers are adjusting to this as well.

What does Gen Z want?

Gen Z consumers thrive off convenience – they want deliveries to work around their schedule, not the other way around. Compared to the average consumer, Gen Z is more likely to shop online when the availability of alternative delivery options such as weekend, hyper-local (1-3 hours), same-day, next-day and after hours deliveries are available. In this case, 58% said they would pay more than $5 for one-hour deliveries.

Three out of the five reasons that Gen Z consumers abandon their online shopping cart is due to shipping-related issues. High shipping cost was identified as the leading reason why Gen Z would ditch their purchase, while the lack of “free shipping” also impacted this.

Tip: One option to provide the ultimate convenience for Gen Z to pick up their deliveries are parcel lockers. A carrier delivers the parcel to the locker, which automatically texts to alert the consumer of the package and provide a unique entry code. At the consumer’s convenience, they approach the lockers, enter the code and retrieve their package – no more concern over shipping costs and porch pirates!

As you are approaching the new generation of consumers, be sure not to lump them in with their predecessors. They are a digital-savvy generation who look for a variety of shipping options that get their packages to them quickly and cheaply. They shop compulsively and are used to instant gratification – meaning the sooner you get them their package, the sooner they will be back on your website looking for more.

Create a consistent experience for them between your shopping channels and engage with them on their terms. A positive shipping experience can make or break a relationship with Gen Z, so don’t crumble under their quickly changing habits and expectations – stay one step ahead and be prepared to give them what they need.