While Generation Z and Millennials are often described as the first generation of digital natives, Generation X (39-59-year olds), are consistently the most open to tech innovation when compared to younger shoppers, research by Vodat International reveals.

Original research of over 1,000 UK shoppers reveals that Generation X are the most willing to use a wide array of in-store technology, ranging from contactless payments and touchscreens through to emerging retail tech, such as augmented and virtual reality.

One of the key drivers of this trend is that Generation X shoppers view store technology as a fast and convenient way to satisfy their need for product information.  65% of GenX said they would be happy to use digital touchscreens to access product details – compared to 53% of Millennials (29-38-year olds) and 50% of Generations Z shoppers.

The statistics also highlight a higher uptake by GenX consumers when it came to using interactive shelves and digital edge labels that provide product specs, information kiosks that enable ordering, and shop floor staff equipped with tablets or smartphones.

20% of Generation X shoppers said they would happily interact with robotic shop assistants, compared to 16% of Millennials and just 12% of GenZ customers.  17% of GenX shopper said they would like to see augmented and virtual reality instore compared to just 10% of the younger age groups.

While younger shoppers are often portrayed as being glued to their mobile phones, research reveals it is in fact older shoppers who are more likely to download and use retailers’ apps to collect and redeem loyalty points, vouchers and offers.  Loyalty card apps are popular with half of all GenX respondents, slipping to 44% of GenZ and 42% of Millennials.

Roy Reynolds, Technical Director at Vodat International, commented: “It’s clear that in-store connectivity and customer-facing tech have now firmly entered the retail mainstream. Shoppers from all generations now expect slick, innovative digital experiences while they shop.  Retailers that successfully fulfil this desire, rather than simply paying lip service will win a greater slice of the market and successfully increase conversion rates, customer loyalty and brand advocacy.”