The Green Consumer: Who Are the Most Sustainability-Centered Consumers?
When your company makes decisions, it’s done with the customer in mind. You need to offer a product and service that your target market craves. If you’re not selling what your market wants, then there’s no way that your company will succeed.
This includes your company’s sustainability choices. Although sustainability should be a consideration for your company no matter what, some consumers will care more about sustainability than others. If your target market makes their purchasing decisions based on sustainability, then your company needs to start making green changes now before you start losing customers.
As it turns out, demographics surrounding green consumers vary greatly. But, one thing is for certain: green purchasing decisions are on the rise globally, and companies need to start making sustainable choices now if they want to remain competitive.
Let’s take a look at different demographics and how likely they are to make sustainability-minded purchasing decisions.
Many studies have found that women are more likely to make green purchasing decisions. However, this seems to depend on the age group and industry.
According to a survey by ICOM Information and Communications, women aged 55 – 59 were the most likely to take environmental concerns into consideration when purchasing a product. However, males in the 65 – 69 age group were 1.6 times more likely to make green purchasing decisions than the average American.
Across age lines, the study found that women were more likely to make sustainable purchasing choices overall. However, one study conducted in Hong Kong found that men were more likely to make greener choices when purchasing healthy food. This suggests that the differences between men and women when it comes to sustainable purchasing decisions may not be that substantial. Whether your target market is men or women, it’s best to play it safe and enact sustainability in your business strategy.
A 2021 survey conducted for the United Nations Climate Change Conference of 10,000 people in 17 different countries showed that 33% of millennials take green purchases seriously compared to 24% – 29% of those in older generations.
The same survey also found, however, that interest in green products is growing across all age demographics. Additionally, older generations are only slightly behind millennials when it comes to sustainable purchasing choices.
Another 2017 study surveying 10,000 individuals from 28 countries found that the middle-aged are more likely to be environmentally conscious than older or younger demographics. This contradicts the common assumption that younger generations are more likely to care about environmental issues. This study found that it had little to do with nationality and education level and more to do with the stage of life. Those in the 40 – 60-year-old age range are more conscious of how their decisions affect the world and are keen to make a positive impact. Those in the younger age groups may not yet understand their individual impact, and those in the older age groups might understand their impacts but not care as much.
These studies show that sustainability should be a consideration no matter the age group of your target market. However, if your market consists of millennials and those in their middle ages, then sustainability should be at the forefront of your business model.
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