Sustainable shopping remains top for UK consumers despite economic challenges, survey finds

New research from American Express has found that sustainability remains front of mind for British consumers when they are shopping, despite the current economic climate.

According to a survey of 2,000 UK consumers, four in 10 (41%) prefer to shop locally rather than online, reducing the carbon footprint associated with deliveries driven by ecommerce. Almost two thirds (63%) would only shop with a retailer offering sustainable delivery options.

Furthermore, the vast majority agree that sustainable packaging, doing social good and a brand’s ethical reputation are all important when deciding who to spend with. And two thirds (65%) think about the environmental impact of the goods they buy when shopping.

The research also found that a third (32%) would spend more on an item that had better environmental credentials, jumping to almost half (45%) amongst 18-34 year-olds. A similar proportion (30%) of shoppers said that if the cost-of-living crisis wasn’t impacting their day-to-day spend, they’d be more inclined to shop sustainably.

Daniel Edelman, vice president & UK general manager, merchant services at American Express, said: “Our research shows that despite the current challenges, sustainability remains important to shoppers. However, as consumers become increasingly selective about where to spend and what they buy, merchants need to scrutinise their own sustainability strategy and how best to communicate that effectively to customers.”

The stats are featured within a new American Express report, How We Buy: The Trends Shaping Shopping, which aims to offer valuable insights on consumers’ buying behaviours and preferences.

It also highlighted the importance of recommerce for shoppers looking for more sustainable fashion, with 64% or respondents preferring to shop with secondhand retailers, whether that’s in-store or online. While, 40% said that an ‘end of life’ scheme to help them recycle goods would make them shop more regularly, or spend more, with a retailer.

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