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Gen Z consumers aged 23 and under are expected to have a particularly tougher Christmas, as Mintel’s latest German Lifestyles research reveals 48% of them say money is going to be tighter than usual this Christmas. This compares to just over a third (36%) of German consumers as a whole.

Meanwhile, 44% of German Gen Zs and 29% of German Millennials (aged 24-39) say they are trying to add to their savings as a result of the outbreak, 62% of this age group and 64% of Millennials confirm they haven’t been able to increase their savings since the outbreak of the pandemic.

Mainga Hachibiti, Lifestyles Analyst at Mintel, explains:

“After the financial crisis in 2009, the COVID-19 pandemic is the second crisis hitting the Millennial generation within one decade, and the first one Gen Z has to face in the most formative years of their life. While some have started their first job, some became unemployed or were furloughed, putting them under financial and emotional pressure. Given the current circumstances, it seems logical to try and put money aside. However, this translates in a loss of consumer spending, which could have negative consequences for the German economy. To encourage consumer spending, companies need to take action both from a marketing and pricing perspective. They need to clearly demonstrate the value of their products and services and work on high-quality innovations meeting specific consumer needs, such as wellbeing.”

COVID-19 boosts online shopping among German Baby Boomers

Mintel’s German Lifestyles also reveals that 26% of German consumers are shopping more online since the pandemic. Traditionally, younger consumers have been more enthusiastic online shoppers, but as a result of lockdown restrictions, data from Mintel’s Global COVID-19 Tracker shows older shoppers have increasingly embraced e-commerce. Almost one in five (19%) Baby Boomers (aged between 56 and 74) are shopping more online since the start of the outbreak, up from 13% saying so in April 2020. Furthermore, 43% of this age group is trying to do most of this year’s Christmas shopping online.

Mainga Hachibiti, Lifestyles Analyst at Mintel, comments:

“COVID-19 has been a real catalyst for change in various ways. Being more prone to serious effects from COVID-19, more Baby Boomers have discovered the convenience of online shopping, and these habits could stay more permanent. As many elderly people live relatively remotely in rural areas, brands can support them in their daily lives through online services. They could, for example, further expand their online businesses beyond the usual targeting of solely urban areas and younger target groups. This could prove especially valuable for the online grocery sector. By offering easy to follow guidelines, transparent terms and conditions and trustworthy customer-friendly service, companies can meet older consumers’ needs and shift more focus on this specific target group.”

Get your free copy of Mintel’s German Lifestyles report here to find out more about the consumer spending and trending topics for the German market, including the future of retail, sustainability and the experience economy.