The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed consumer habits beyond recognition, and the way we shop is of course no exception. While stores shut their doors during lockdown, shoppers were forced to consider an alternative to a day on the high street. Whilst tech-native Millennials (24-39) and Gen Zs (18-23) have long embraced e-commerce and digital payment solutions, a new cohort has been driving growth since lockdown came into effect.
Klarna UK spend data from June 2020 shows that Gen X (40-54) was the age segment that grew at the fastest rate during the lockdown period, and is now the second largest segment of Klarna’s UK consumer spend. In fact, the number of Gen X (40-54) consumers using Klarna increased by twice as much as those of Gen Z (18-23). The next fastest growing segment during June was those aged 54+.
So what’s driving the transition?
We’ve identified a combination of factors driving the change:
- Klarna’s diverse range of merchants from homeware, leisure, garden through to sports and hobbies. In the UK Klarna has 6,500 merchants, including brands like: Peloton, Made.com and Brompton, spanning a broad range of spending categories and price points.
- The second trend driving this growth is the migration of those who traditionally shopped on the high street and had to look for an alternative solution. Growth among this generation was already well underway, as a third (33%) of the consumers who have used Klarna since 2017 are between 35 and 55 years old, but it was certainly accelerated by COVID-19 and with the continued uncertainty in bricks and mortar shops safety, it shows no sign of slowing down, even as shops reopen.
It seems these newly minted online shoppers have developed an affinity for the convenience, flexibility and the smooothness of Klarna solutions, and being able to browse from the comfort of their own home, as Gen X (40-54) now represents a fifth of all Klarna consumers in the UK.
The culmination of these shifts proves that it is not only younger generations who are willing to embrace new ways to shop, and those aged 40+ are just as invested in optimising the experience. Consumers of all ages are looking for better ways to buy what they love.