Just how much emphasis do consumers put on eco-friendly product these days? Our research in 2005 showed that only 11 percent of consumers said they were looking for product that was eco-friendly (that didn’t include food and cars). That number grew to 18 percent by 2008. Then there was this ‘little’ distraction called the recession and the consumer almost all but forgot about eco-friendly with the exception of electricity, automobiles (gas consumption, more than emissions) and healthier food.
Enter the recovery and consumers have begun their focus on eco-friendly again, but with a very different spin. The consumer today is more focused on what they can do to reduce their own expenses as they relate to a more energy efficient lifestyle. More and more they tell us they are more aware of their carbon footprint, but, not quite the same way as prior to recession.
Now… here comes the kicker. Today’s consumers expect that the companies they buy from are doing more than their part to make eco-friendly decisions for their businesses. The consumer expects that corporations are doing the right things and they want to know that they are supporting those efforts. Moreover, they are willing to do business or more inclined to do business with eco-responsible companies. The biggest difference with the consumer today is in how their focus has shifted. They feel that the responsibility for ‘green’ lies with the brand and the store. (more…)