China’s Gen Z digitises consumption with new tech, shifting preferences

by Kandy Wong at

Increased economic participation from China’s roughly 280 million members of Generation Z is driving innovation in e-commerce, fintech and digital services, transforming the digital sector into an even more significant component of the country’s economic growth, a survey has found.

China Trading Desk collected 1,900 valid responses out of a total of 2,400 in January, determining that Generation Z, a cohort also known as “Zoomers”, is made up of “digital natives”.

The Singapore-based marketing agency concluded the “adventurous, lonely, lethargic and liberated” generation is at the “forefront” of adopting new technologies, which in turn influences their consumption habits.

Gen Z, those born between 1996 and 2010, are “no less important” than their millennial predecessors – sometimes called Generation Y – and their “influence on the world’s largest marketplace is just beginning,” said China Trading Desk founder Subramania Bhatt.

For the purposes of its survey, the agency defined Gen Y as those between the ages of 28 and 43.

As an example, researchers pointed out that young Chinese women, especially Zoomers, are a major force for outbound travel and “changing the pattern of Chinese tourism”.

China’s Zoomers are far more interested in South Korea than their older counterparts, they said – particularly those of Generation X aged between 44 and 59 – as the Gen Z population has “made that country their second-most visited destination”.