The concept of digital engagement is often used to assess the extent to which people use internet-connected devices in their daily lives. Many people assume that younger people are more digitally engaged than older generations, but research from PYMNTS suggests this stereotype tells only half the truth.
The report, published in partnership with Stripe, entitled “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.
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Get the report: Benchmarking the global digital transformation – The ConnectedEconomy™ Index Q1 2022
The report, which examines consumer behavior in 11 countries and examines data from over 15,000 people, showed that while millennials were key early advocates of e-commerce, engaging older generations is key to elevating a country’s CE Index and tapping into it of the full potential of the digital economy.
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With a CE index of 30.1, Brazil was above average in the overall ranking, roughly on par with the USA (30.3), but the country lagged behind in terms of digital engagement among Millennials and Generation Z.
Among the six European countries surveyed – the UK, Netherlands, Germany, France, Italy and Spain – the charts show high levels of engagement among Millennials, slightly lower among Gen Z and even lower among Gen X. The generations with Das The lowest levels of digital engagement in these countries were the baby boomers and seniors.
The data also showed that countries like the UK and the Netherlands are overly reliant on millennial purchasing power to build sustainable digital economies.
Due to the uneven distribution of digital engagement between generations, four out of six European countries – the Netherlands, Germany, Italy and France – all scored a lower CE index than Brazil despite having 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 having internet access in the 90th percentile.
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By benchmarking levels of engagement, the report demonstrates the value of taking a holistic view of the digital economy, and initiatives that encourage cross-generational consumer and cultural engagement with the internet are needed if Europe is to share the benefits of digital technology more equally.
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