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Social media, mobile payments are prerequisites for Gen Z shoppers


The use of social media and mobile money is front-of-mind for Generation Z or ‘zoomers’ and really prerequisites for these shoppers to actively contribute to commerce.

A new report by Thunes titled Gen Z: The Future of Spending, suggests that most Gen Z consumers get their knowledge of products from social media and not from traditional mainstream media. Even in emerging markets such as Africa, social media is fueling commerce.

The study carried out in 13 countries, including Kenya and Nigeria, highlights the changing e-commerce trends that the new generation prefers.

“Gen Z is influenced by social media more than any other generation. 8 out of 10 said they use social media on multiple occasions throughout the day,” the report claims..

It adds “In Kenya and Nigeria, for example, 96% and 92% of Gen Zs respectively say they use social media on multiple occasions throughout the day. In almost every emerging market surveyed, zoomers are at least daily users of social media.”

Ratings and reviews are also becoming more important for the zoomers, especially in emerging markets, the report said. In these regions, Gen Zs are most likely to stress the importance of rating and review sites as a factor in their spending decision.

In Kenya, 44% of Gen Zs trust ratings and reviews, more than twice as many as those who cite friends or families; in the Philippines, 43% of Gen Zs agree.


According to the report, traditional bank accounts are not a preferred method of payment or fund management by the zoomers.

“For some emerging economy zoomers, mobile wallets from new entrants to financial services provide a means to access services they would previously have been excluded from; but even in countries with less of an exclusion issue, use of mobile wallets has become widespread,” the report states. .

While Kenya is renowned for its use of mobile money and it gives zoomers a flexible option of purchasing goods and managing their money, however, compared to other regions, cash is still important, particularly in emerging markets.

Thunes CEO Peter De Caluwe said, “As the world moves online, social media, content and entertainment platforms, payment providers, and consumer brands looking to capitalise on Zoomers and their online spending habits must consider all the factors above. Gen Z will be influenced first, not by price or even range or scarcity, but by their social circles, brand engagement online, and trendy, convenient, trustworthy payment options.”

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