Report: Europe’s digital transformation slowed down

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The concept of digital engagement is frequently used to gauge the extent to which people use internet-connected devices in their daily lives. Many people assume that young people are more digitally engaged than older generations, but research from PYMNTS suggests that this stereotype only tells half the story.

Published in collaboration with Stripe, the report, Benchmarking The World’s Digital Transformation, uses the PYMNTS ConnectedEconomy™ Index (CE Index) to measure digital engagement across the 10 pillars of the connected economy.

Read more: 10 things that will define digital transformation in 2022

Get the report: Benchmarking digital transformation around the world – The ConnectedEconomy™ Index Q1 2022

The report, which examines consumer behavior in 11 countries and studies data from more than 15,000 people, found that while millennials were important early adopters of e-commerce, engaging older generations was key to increase a country’s CE index and realize the full potential of the digital economy. .

Read also: Digital is changing the way the world buys, pays and banks – at different speeds

For example, Brazil was above average in the overall ranking with a CE index of 30.1, roughly on par with the United States (30.3), but when it comes to digital engagement among Millennials and Gen Z, the country lagged significantly behind the others.

Across the six European countries surveyed (UK, Netherlands, Germany, France, Italy and Spain), the charts lean towards high levels of engagement among Millennials, slightly lower among Gen Z, and yet lower among Generation X. The generations with the lowest levels of digital engagement in these countries were baby boomers and seniors.

The data further showed that countries like the UK and the Netherlands are overly reliant on the purchasing power of millennials when it comes to developing sustainable digital economies.

Because of such an unequal distribution of digital engagement across generations, four out of six European countries – the Netherlands, Germany, Italy and France – all scored lower in the CE index than Brazil, despite better infrastructure and more mature economies.

The study also found that there is no linear correlation between internet access and digital engagement, with most European countries scoring below 30 in the CE index despite levels of Internet access in the 90th percentile.

Read more: How the World Pays: The Long Road to Digital Transformation

By comparing levels of engagement, the report demonstrates the value of a holistic consideration of the digital economy, and if Europe is to share the benefits of digital technology more equitably, it needs initiatives that encourage cross-generational consumer and cultural engagement with the Internet.

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About: PYMNTS’ survey of 2,094 consumers for The Tailored Shopping Experience report, a collaboration with Elastic Path, shows where merchants are succeeding and where they need to up their game to deliver a personalized shopping experience.

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