Putting Sustainability into Practice
With increasing regularity, customers are shopping with a conscience as much as they are shopping with their eyes. It's time for businesses to take the lead on the climate crisis or risk getting left behind.
According to Deloitte’s 2021 sustainable consumer behaviour survey, nearly 1-in-3 consumers now refuse to purchase from certain brands due to sustainable or ethical concerns about the company. This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to changing consumer behaviour's around the topic of sustainability and why, if it's not been done already, you need to start putting it into practice.
With the UK retail industry being one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gases, contributing approximately 80% more emissions per year than all road transport in the UK combined, it is desperately urgent that, not just to continue attracting consumers, but to aid the country’s recovery from the climate crisis, habits change and soon.
73% of UK consumers will shop more sustainably in 2021.
The growth in digital and online retail over the past 10 years has been incredible, retail has completely shifted from how we know it, especially after the past year or so which has given us 5 years of online retail growth in the matter of months.
Now, as we look to the future, ‘Sustainable consumerism’ is more than just a buzzword. It looks likely that this will be as important to the retail industry for the next 10 years as digital was to the last. According to a report by Garnier, 73% of UK consumers intend to shop more sustainably in 2021, with many seeing 2020 as a wake up call.
As changes begin to be made, it looks to be the small businesses leading the way. With over 70% of Good Liverpool retailers having already implemented sustainable practices into their business and supply chains, we have visibly seen this at a local level.
Gen Z are adopting more sustainable practices than older generations - 45% have stopped purchasing from certain brands due to ethical and sustainable concerns.
From both Bark Candles and Candle Collective UK using vegan friendly, cruelty free and biodegradable materials in their products to Jostle Bakery only using ethically and sustainably sourced chocolate from Madagascar, Good Liverpool retailers are a shining light for what can and should be achieved on a local level to affect change.
Consumers are beginning to demand more from brands as sustainability grows more into the limelight. As younger generations become more active consumers, this trend will continue growing. The Deloitte study mentioned earlier brings light to the fact that Gen Z are adopting more sustainable practices than older generations, with 50% reducing how much they buy and 45% having completely stopped purchasing from certain brands due to ethical and sustainable concerns.
No longer just a benefit to business, sustainable practices will be demanded and expected. It is with the everyday purchases consumers are demanding the most in terms of sustainability. Purchases such as groceries, household items, personal care and clothing are at the top of the list when it comes to products bought with a conscious focus on sustainability.
This trend comes with a big focus for business, because consumers want to see brands taking charge and leading the way. 64% of consumers want businesses to reduce packaging, 50% want brands to give them more information on how to recycle and 46% want more clarity on the sourcing of products.
It’s clear that sustainability needs to be implemented, but importantly, it must be noted that consumers are not keen to pay all that much extra to go sustainable. Particularly in the UK, where only 24% of digital buyers (from a study conducted by Nepa) were willing to pay extra for sustainable delivery methods. Brands need to make sustainability accessible, otherwise they risk losing consumers to more sustainable businesses or alienating consumers looking for more accessible options.
If you’re interested in finding out more about sustainable practices that can be implemented into your business, or if you want to share ideas that can aid both us and our retailers in our plan to become fully sustainable, get in touch at email@example.com or drop us a message through Instagram - @good_liverpool