First Insight and the Baker Retailing Center at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania’s latest consumer survey focused on how sustainable practices are impacting shopping habits and purchase decisions. “The results point to the growing adoption for sustainable purchases, with Generation Z influencing other generations towards sustainability,” the authors of the report said.
The survey revealed that Gen Z is influencing “the older generations to place more importance on sustainability in their purchasing decisions” and that the “vast majority of Generation Z shoppers say sustainability is more important than brand name when making purchase decisions.”
The report also showed that Gen Z’s influence over their Gen X parents “shows a significant increase over two years ago on preference to shop sustainable brands and willingness to pay more for sustainable products.”
Other key findings of the report include that shoppers across all generations “are willing to spend more for sustainable products compared to two years ago,” the report noted. “Generation X, commonly parents to Gen Zers, had the highest increase (42 percent) in willingness to pay more for sustainable products. All generations are willing to spend an additional 10 percent or more on sustainable products compared to data fielded in 2019. Baby Boomers increased by 230 percent, Generation X increased by 159 percent, Millennials increased by 72 percent and Generation Z increased by 50 percent.”
Moreover, the research showed that sustainability was more important to Gen Z than brand when making a purchase decision. The report found that 75 percent of Generation Z surveyed “prefer sustainability over brand name of product,” which compares to 61 percent of Millennials, 66 percent of Generation X and 65 percent of Baby Boomers.
Other findings included that the majority of Baby Boomers (44 percent), Generation X (48 percent), and Millennials (46 percent) “believe that sustainability means products made from recycled, sustainable, and natural harvested fibers and materials” while Generation Z (48 percent) believes that sustainability is more about sustainable manufacturing.”