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03/23/2022

Survey: Customers will pay for sustainability

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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Consumers take sustainability seriously.

Consumers are invested in shopping sustainably.

Almost half of consumers (49%) believe that the responsibility for implementing sustainable practices falls on corporations and retailers, as opposed to individuals or government regulators, according to a new consumer survey from Sensormatic Solutions, a Johnson Controls company. 

Over half of those surveyed (53%) said they would use a brand or store less frequently if they discovered that a brand or store wasn't operating sustainably, and 18% said they would stop shopping with that retailer altogether.

Furthermore, 70% of respondents say they are willing to pay at least 5% more for products that can demonstrate a fully sustainable supply chain—even though cost is the most cited barrier to sustainable shopping (55%), closely followed by consumers’ perception that the stores they frequent do not offer many sustainable options (47%).

Nearly 90% of respondents think that retailers don't do enough to showcase their sustainability efforts, and one-third of respondents don't trust the claims brands make about their green products.

Over 90% of respondents said that it’s important to them that retailers continue to improve environmental performance and energy management in their stores. Sixty-two percent would like to see this done through a switch to sustainable packaging alternatives, and 54% would like retailers to enhance inventory intelligence to avoid overstocks, wasted goods, added deliveries while optimizing fulfillment methods, and more.

Consumers held varying definitions of “sustainable practices,” ranging from installation of energy-efficient displays to utilization of alternative packaging, and participation in recycling programs, among others. As such, when exploring options to bolster sustainable retail initiatives, retailers can decide which options work best for their business model.

“This survey speaks to a belief we’ve long held: prioritizing sustainable solutions is simply good business,” said Kim Melvin, global leader of marketing, Sensormatic Solutions. “Facilitating sustainable retail operations has been at the heart of Sensormatic Solutions business for some time; but now, that same sentiment is mirrored among consumers.  American shoppers of all ages want to see brands make investments that support responsible retail at all levels. In fact, they don’t see businesses engaging in sustainable operations as an option—they see it as an obligation.”

Sustainability affects supply chain execs sleep
A recent survey of U.S. supply chain professionals conducted by enterprise software provider SAP and Regina Corso Consulting, shows that 28% of respondents said supply chain sustainability issues keep them up at night.Despite the fact that only 28% of respondents said sustainability is disrupting their sleep patterns, 91% of respondents said that their company has specific sustainability goals or objectives, and 95% said that procurement plays a significant role in achieving those sustainability goals.

See the complete Sensormatic survey results at The Era of Sustainable Retail.

Sensormatic Solutions collected responses from 1,000 U.S.-based consumers, 18-years and older, via a third-party provider to determine findings of its 2022 Sustainability Survey. The survey was conducted between Jan. 28- 30, 2022.