4 ways to rid your website of Gen Z users

May 9, 2023

Are you tired of Gen Z’s supporting your brand and using your website or product? Do you wish you were making less money? Do you want to ensure your brand does not stay relevant with the changing times? Well you are in luck! As both a visual designer and a representative of said generation,  I feel I am perfectly placed to provide you with a tongue-in-cheek guide on how to scare away those pesky digital natives.

To start off, here is a quick primer on zoomers:

So what can you do to keep me and the rest of my generation from engaging with your site?

Keep it cluttered

A man looking around a messy living room

If there is one thing Gen Z hates, it’s a crowded UI. As a generation born and raised on minimal digital interfaces, we have grown accustomed to easy navigation, structured hierarchies, and plenty of white space in which to frolic. Compare the product page for eBay vs up and coming second hand fashion retailer DePop, both are selling a sweatshirt, but DePop utilises a much simpler interface with less items competing for your attention.

Screenshot from Ebay of a listing for a grey sweatshirt
Ebay listing
Screenshot from DePop website of a listing for a grey sweatshirt
DePop listing

Overwhelming users with advertisements, pop-ups, or other unnecessary UI distractions is an easy way to turn them off their journey.

Don’t showcase your brand values

Logan Roy from the tv show Succession saying money wins.

Gen Z is values-driven and seeks authenticity in all areas of life, including digital experiences. We are more likely to support brands that share our values. Another great way to deter us is to avoid showcasing any brand values at all, sticking solely to insincere or corporate brand language. Don't bother highlighting any of your company's social responsibility initiatives or sustainability practices and avoid diverse imagery. Keep your focus solely on profits, and watch as your Gen Z audience dwindles.

Be slow and unresponsive

An animated sloth slowly moving a piece of paper, from the film Zootopia

The commonly heard statistic about my generation is that we only have an 8 second attention span. No one likes waiting for a page to load, and we have even less patience than the previous generation. Add to that the fact that we are considerably more likely to be visiting your site on a mobile device than a desktop. A slow and unresponsive site is a surefire way to scare off any generation, but Gen Z even more so.

Stay off the socials

Aubrey Plaza in the show Parks & Recreation saying I hate talking to people

Finally, if you really want to avoid my generation be sure to stay off of social channels. We are known for being the most connected generation, and social media plays a huge role in our daily lives. A significant portion of Gen Z users turn to Tik Tok to Search before they turn to Google. If you don't have any social media presence or even a limited one, you're missing out on a major opportunity to connect with the Gen Z demographic.

By following these simple guidelines you can guarantee that you'll lose out on a key audience, limiting your users and your potential sales. But if you want to stay relevant and thrive in the modern digital age, you may want to consider doing the opposite of everything we've just discussed. The choice is yours.

We're an evidence-led, product & service design studio founded in 2013. We believe that the research and strategy behind great design is just as important as the design itself. By gathering data and insights to inform our decisions, we help organisations create services and products based on evidence, not opinion. A hypothesis driven design framework helps us achieve this. Please get in touch if you would like to know more. Using our methods we envision unique experiences built on a solid functional foundation that are a pleasure to use and have the potential for meaning, delight and significance in people’s lives.

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