What do consumers think about the metaverse?

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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The metaverse holds potential for retailers.

A new survey sheds light on consumer familiarity with and expectations for the metaverse.

Market research platform Suzy recently surveyed over 1,000 American consumers about their knowledge and experience surrounding the metaverse. While only 5% of respondents said they are part of the metaverse, the survey still reveals potential for the metaverse as a retail channel. 

In the metaverse, consumers use augmented and virtual reality technology to digitally engage with each other and their surroundings, with crossovers into the physical world.

The survey revealed that 41% of respondents are interested in connecting with others virtually, while 26% reported feeling neutral and 19% said they were not interested. More than half (52%) of respondents have heard of the metaverse, with 42% saying they don’t know much about it.

Of respondents who have not heard of the metaverse, 76% are disinterested or neutral, while 25% expressed interest (figures total over 100% due to rounding). While 42% of respondents have not seen any brands on the metaverse, among those who have, the top five metaverse brands are:

  • Meta/Facebook (41%),
  • Nike and Microsoft (tied at18%),
  • Disney and Coca-Cola (tied at 17%).

In addition, Suzy analysis indicates that metaverse brand recognition is emerging for Wendy’s, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Chipotle, NASCAR, Hyundai, and Balenciaga, although all are currently receiving 10% or less of customers’ recognition.

The survey also examined the impact of celebrity influencers in the metaverse, finding that more than half of respondents (53%) are not interested in interacting with celebrities in the metaverse. But among those respondents interested in celebrity influencer interaction, Lady Gaga tops the list as the most sought-after celebrity (24%), followed by Rihanna (22%), Snoop Dogg (20%), and Paris Hilton (12%).

NFTs have low acquisition rate
The survey also examined respondent attitudes toward non-fungible tokens. Findings include:

  • More than half of respondents have heard of but not acquired NFTs (55%).
  • Of those that have heard of but not acquired NFTs, nearly half (48%) are not likely to acquire one at all, while only 18% are likely or very likely.
  • Over one-third (36%) of respondents have not heard of NFTs.
  • 9% of respondents have heard of and acquired NFTs. Of those that own NFTs, 46% acquired them due to an expected increase in value over time. Another 38% acquired them because they liked the design, 28% acquired to support an artist, and 28% acquired because it was an exclusive item.

Metaverse shoppers make good customers
A recent consumer survey, “The Metaverse Mindset: Consumer Shopping Insights,” from experiential e-commerce platform Obsess, indicates that 70% of all consumers who have shopped online in a virtual store have made a purchase in one.

Overall, one-quarter of respondents to the Obsess survey had shopped online in a 3D virtual store. Among that group, 70%—including 69% of Gen Zers, 77% of millennials and 67% of Gen Xers—had made a purchase in a virtual store.