Survey Shows Slight Decline In Consumer Enthusiasm For Socially-Conscious Spending

Monday, December 19, 2016

Attention social enterprises selling consumer products and services: U.S. shoppers are somewhat less interested in buying socially responsible stuff. That’s the finding of a study from Good. Must. Grow, a socially responsible marketing firm. Its fourth annual Conscious Consumer Spending Index found a slip in such purchases in 2016, after a two-year climb.

Specifically, the study found that 31% of Americans are planning to spend more with companies that are socially responsible in the year ahead, down slightly from 32% the previous year. Also 60% agreed that such purchases are important compared to 64% in 2015. And 64% reported buying from social enterprises vs. 65% in 2015.

Other results also underscored the trend. Consumers reported being slightly less likely to have recycled or preferred reusable products, for example.

Then there’s this: When asked about the effectiveness of different groups to create positive social change, 70% of respondents chose nonprofits, about  20 percentage points higher than social enterprises, among other organizations. According to Heath Shackleford, Good. Must. Grow founder, while the results were surprising, they don’t predict a calamity.

“This was a very slight dip,” he says. “I’m not in crisis mode over it.”

Source: Forbes (link opens in a new window)

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