The State of Personal Commerce

Personal Commerce is a new state of retail, defined by authentic, always-on experiences that meld to meet the shopper on their terms, turf and timeline. This new era of commerce has created a new generation of informed buyers whose expectations of the brands they shop from are shaped by their digital experiences.

To better understand the behavior of this new informed buyer, Bluecore surveyed 522 U.S. online shoppers over the course of a two week period in Q1 2021 on their preferences.

Part 1: Trust

Below are our findings for Part 1 in this State of Personal Commerce series, which details the experiences and sources that have the most influence over consumers’ trust in a brand, across demographics.

Recommendations from an influencer or celebrity have very little impact on shoppers’ trust in a brand.


  • A successful purchase experience (40% rank #1) would encourage shoppers to trust a brand.
  • At the other extreme, the aspect that would have the least impact on building trust is recommendations from a trusted influencer/celebrity (59% rank #5).

Customer service wins over Millennial shoppers’ (ages 25-34) trust in a brand.


  • A successful purchase experience would have the most impact on brand trust in all age segments.
  • A successful customer service experience is ranked highest by Millennials.
  • Time spent using the product and having it meet expectations is ranked highest by both Gen X+Y and Boomers.

Price has the biggest impact on a shoppers’ willingness to trust a brand.


  • Price (65%) has the most impact on a shopper’s willingness to trust a brand.
  • Reviews (53%) and brand values (43%) also have significant impact on brand trust.
  • Among those mentioning “size of company” as impacting their willingness to trust a brand, a majority are more likely to trust a large company (70%) compared to a small company (30%). There is no difference by segment. (not graphed)

Gen Z shoppers (ages 18-24) look to reviews before putting their trust in a brand.


  • Price would have the most impact in all age segments.
  • Reviews (60%) would also have substantial impact on a Gen Z’s willingness to trust a brand.
  • Brand values (51%) would have a great deal of impact on a Millennial’s willingness to trust a brand.

A faulty product experience has the greatest impact on causing a shopper to lose trust in a brand.


  • A faulty product experience (28%) would have the most impact on causing a shopper to lose trust in a brand.
  • Poor customer service (26%) and an inadequate purchase experience (21%) would also negatively impact the trust in a brand

More than half of Boomers (55+) would lose trust in a brand because of a faulty product experience or poor customer service.


  • Boomers are most likely to lose trust in a brand due to a faulty product (40%). Many in this segment also would lose trust due to poor customer service (32%).
  • A poor customer service experience (26%) and an inadequate purchase experience (25%) would have a relatively large impact on trust among Gen Z shoppers.


This data was collected through an online panel conducted by Dynata.

  • The surveys were distributed over the course of a two-week period in Q1, 2021
  • 522 US-based individuals age 18+ responded to the survey
  • Respondents frequently or occasionally shopped online prior to COVID-19