US consumers turn to brands and eco-labels to guide better shopping habits


New research from Sustainable Brands™ and Ipsos sheds light on consumer behaviors and priorities post-pandemic, and how product labeling influences purchasing decisions.

Sustainable Brands™ (SB) continues to monitor changes in the motivations and behaviors of WE consumers, alongside their prioritization of social and environmental issues. Thanks to this collaborative research, the brands that make up the SB marks for good collective use this data to frame their strategies and messaging regarding consumer attitudes, behaviors and opinions in our rapidly changing society.

In partnership with Ipsosthe last of SB
Sociocultural trends research study (conducted March 2022) surveyed 1,000 US consumers. This study was designed to measure consumer progress in adopting sustainable lifestyles across the Nine sustainable behaviors. It also measured the level of priority given to sustainable actions since the pandemic and how product labeling influences purchasing decisions.

When measuring actions taken around the nine sustainable behaviors, people tend to prioritize those that are already normalized in mainstream society – such as recycling, energy conservation, using less disposable products and reducing food and water waste. ‘Go circular‘ was the top sustainable behavior that consumers reported adopting most or all of the time; and respondents select ‘Recycle as much as possible‘ as the most important sustainable action to take. When looking at things other than family, kids, and work, consumers give ‘Have a positive impact on society‘ and ‘Make environmentally friendly choices‘ the same general level of importance as other daily priorities, such as maintaining a fitness routine and home improvements. The top priority, however, is to have time for themselves; 46% of people indicated that this has become an increased priority since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

To better understand how US consumers prioritize sustainability, the study presented them with a selection of sustainability-related logos often found on packaging. They were asked to rank the logos in order of importance when considering the purchase of a household product (washing-up liquid), electronics (a computer mouse) or food (a new snack). Reflecting their responses as to how they prioritize their own personal actions, ‘Packaging made with recycled materials‘ tops the list for motivating buying decisions for washing up liquid and a new computer mouse. When purchasing a snack, top motivators included certifications such as Rainforest Alliance and Fair trade certified.

For an in-depth review of this report, please visit Brands for good socio-cultural trends
web page and download the highlights report. Understanding consumer intentions and actions towards sustainable lifestyles is a vital step for brands. This information is the backbone for creating impactful campaigns that drive lasting consumer behavior change in an accessible, inspiring and rewarding way.


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