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US, UK buyers ready to pay more for sustainability: survey

Jul '20
Pic: CGS
Pic: CGS
The United Kingdom is home to more eco-friendly consumers, but both US and UK consumers are willing to pay higher prices for sustainable shopping options, according to the 2020 Retail and Sustainability Survey conducted by CGS, which found consumers in both the nations identified a number of ways brands could adopt sustainable practices like waste reduction.

Us firm CGS is a global provider of business applications, enterprise learning and outsourcing services.

Consumers in both the countries are factoring sustainability into their retail shopping. In the United Kingdom, 61 per cent of consumers believe that sustainability is at least somewhat important, compared with 51 per cent of US consumers, the survey found.

Although more UK consumers rank sustainability as important, consumers in the United States (56 per cent) and the United Kingdom (59 per cent) align in their willingness to pay more for sustainable options.

Beyond this, gender also factors into sustainable shopping across both regions: 26 per cent of women said they are willing to pay 25 per cent more for sustainable goods, compared to 21 per cent of men.

It is clear brands must demonstrate a commitment to eco-conscious practices to win over customers across both regions, CGS said in a press release.

Doing this will not only reinforce brand loyalty, but also give companies an opportunity to raise prices and meet consumer demand for sustainable items.

The majority of US consumers (50 per cent) and UK consumers (57 per cent) believe fashion, apparel and footwear brands do not offer enough visibility into their sustainability practices.

Although consumers from both regions are aligned on the need for more brand transparency, they disagree on who is accountable for ensuring this. UK consumers were more supportive of having the government take a greater role in regulating sustainable practices, while US consumers are looking for brands to take the lead on sustainable action.

As consumers consider how comfortable they will be returning to stores post-COVID-19, many feel e-commerce is the only suitable option in the near-term. More than 40 per cent of consumers in both the nations said they plan to exclusively shop online even as stores reopen; and 14 per cent will only consider shopping at stores with curbside pickup options.

As more consumers adjust their shopping preferences post COVID-19, brands and retailers should re-evaluate their end-to-end sustainability practices – from material sourcing to product packaging. This will be a major component of the customer experience and a way to ensure brand loyalty, CGS said.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (DS)

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