Consumers believe product sustainability to be more important when buying items for the home than when purchasing anything else. Yet, in Home, aside from furniture leader IKEA, supermarkets and department stores are leading the way with ethical initiatives, with shoppers perceiving these retailers to be more environmentally friendly.
33.3% of consumers buying furniture and floorcoverings selected 9 or 10 on a scale of importance for product sustainability. This exceeded food and grocery (32.8%), and health and beauty (32.7%). But it’s supermarkets, including Sainsbury’s with a newly launched pledge to become ‘net zero’ by 2040, and department stores, such as John Lewis with its ‘sustainability edit’ (106 items that are responsibly sourced) that are doing much more in the field than specialist home retailers.
How important consumers think product sustainability is on a scale of 1 (not important) to 10 (very important) when purchasing from each sector, %
Home shoppers score general merchandise retailers M&S and John Lewis in the top three for being environmentally friendly, while other home specialists fall lower in the ranking; scores for Oak Furniture Land, Harveys and Sofology have all dropped since last year. IKEA, however, remains an outlier, ranking first, and is the only retailer among the top five whose score has markedly increased over the last three years (M&S’s score has increased marginally this year compared with last).
Average score given to retailers for the criteria ‘it is environmentally friendly’ by shoppers of homewares and furniture