UK shoppers focus on ethical shopping, despite cost-of-living crisis
Concerns that eco shopping will suffer in the cost-of-living crisis, could be unfounded, research suggests. Shopping with a conscience has become “so important” to 65% of shoppers who stop to think about sustainability before making a purchase, according to new research from eBay for Change.
Over half of UK shoppers still feel guilty when they spend money on products that aren’t from a sustainable or ethical brand. Also, 57% consider first how ethical a business is before making a purchase, the report claims.
Importantly, some 40% of shoppers also said that some or most of their purchases are now from brands that “give back to society or the planet”.
The findings come as eBay for Change launches its second annual Shop for Change Report, which polled over 2,000 consumers on their shopping habits.
The report found that the recent cost of living crisis has changed shopping habits for 80% of UK consumers, with 60% saying that price is currently the factor they care most about when shopping.
However, despite those challenges, shopping “ethically and sustainably” is still important to 50% of consumers who want to shop more regularly from brands that are putting ethics or sustainability at the heart of their operations.
Shoppers are also optimistic about their power to make a difference with their purchases. Some 45% of people believe their purchases have the power to make positive change and 40% consider that shopping from a ‘social enterprise’ does as much or more good than donating to a charity. This is particularly true for Gen Z and millennial shoppers, the report notes.
Meanwhile, over half of shoppers say they are more likely to buy from a brand that supports a specific cause close to their heart. Reducing plastic pollution is the top cause that would make consumers more likely to buy from a social enterprise, followed by protecting the oceans and preserving animals’ natural habitats.
Chris Gale, head of social impact at eBay UK, said: “It’s clear that there’s a real desire from shoppers to shop for both value and values. What’s important now is that businesses and marketplaces support shoppers to act on this desire and work to eliminate the barriers consumers might have to making these swaps every day.”
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