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How much do consumers care about sustainable shopping?

sustainable shopper
Consumers will make certain sacrifices for sustainability.

A new survey provides insight into the impact of sustainability on consumer purchase decisions.

According to the Blue Yonder 2023 Sustainability Survey of U.S.-based consumers, 48% of respondents said they have developed an increased interest in sustainability over the past year, while 44% said it remained the same.

Survey results also indicate that consumers are willing to make personal sacrifices for more eco-friendly shopping, but with limitations. Seven in 10 (69%) respondents said they were willing to pay more for sustainable products, but only 4% are willing to pay 20% more, across all age groups.

Across all age groups, a willingness to pay 5% more was the top selection by respondents who would pay more for sustainable products. Almost six in 10 (58%) respondents reported that price was the most important factor in determining whether to make a sustainable purchase.

Respondents were most willing to paying a premium for eco-friendly products that would heavily impact their day-to-day lives, with apparel (30%), cleaning products (27%), and beauty products (19%) being the three most likely products for respondents who said they would pay more or sustainability.

More than half of respondents (56%) were indifferent or were not sure whether they could trust brands’ sustainability claims related to their manufacturing, supply chain, or recycling/waste practices. A plurality of survey respondents (32%) said that consumer reviews carry the most weight in their green purchasing decisions.

Other key findings:

  • Almost eight in 10 (78%) respondents would wait up to a week for a delayed delivery in favor of an environmentally friendly shipment. Eighty-six percent of respondents were willing to delay their online shipping, provided they were given an incentive to do so. Of this group, 30% indicated they would wait for one week or more.
  • Overall, the majority of respondents (54%) said they would purchase resale household furniture and appliances, with consumer electronics coming in second as 45% of consumers said they are willing to purchase secondhand in this category.
  • The top three overall categories consumers have switched loyalty or will consider switching for are household products (65%), food products (57%), and beauty & wellness (49%).

[Read more: Do consumers care about sustainability and responsibility?]

Blue Yonder collected responses in February 2023 from more than 1,000 U.S.-based consumers, 18 years and older, via a third-party provider.

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