The consumer model is constantly shifting, with many customers today focusing on what is known as “conscious consumerism,” or buying practices driven by a commitment to making purchasing decisions that have a positive social, economic, and environmental impact.1
Consumers are going out of their way to buy from businesses they consider to be upholding standards that align with good values and morals. They are people who will want to know more about the company from which they are buying their purchases.
When making purchases, conscious consumers consider who their purchase is supporting rather than just seeking the lowest overall cost. They are loyal to companies they recognize for being ethical and caring about more than just profit.
Why Does it Matter?
Conscious consumerism is on the rise. 72% of respondents said a company’s purpose or mission is important to earn their support moving forward, an increase from 63% in 2020.2 Being trustworthy as a factor in picking companies jumped from 74% in 2020 to 84% in 2021, while the ability for a company to show a positive impact on society and the environment climbed from 67% to 76%.2
Consumers are now more willing and more active in their pursuit of purposeful brands to support. An impressive 83% of respondents said that how a company treated its employees during the pandemic will be an important factor when determining whether to support that company in the future, up from 72% in 2020.2
The pandemic and its supply chain disruption gave consumers the opportunity and time to reflect on the basic meaning of consumption and the impact of their consumption not just on themselves, but on others and the general society and the environment.
Customers have learned that we are interconnected in terms of the impact of our product/brand choices, therefore we should be conscious of those choices. Consumers will be more likely to judge themselves or others to form a fundamental evaluation of one’s self-concepts (consumer identity) based on their responsible consumption and product or brand choice.3
The Impact on Your Business
Your customers and potential customers are paying attention to the details of your business. They are doing their research and homework before making a purchase or selecting a service provider. They are reading your reviews, visiting your website, and checking on your social media pages.
Conscious consumers know that when you purchase something from a company, you are essentially funding a company to continue doing what they’re doing. They are taking the time to check in to see if they like what you’re doing!
As this trend continues, anticipate that consumers will become even more discerning and exacting when evaluating which brands are actually purposeful.