Almost two-thirds (64%) of American adults report having made purchases from socially responsible companies in the past year, according to an annual survey report from Good.Must.Grow. The survey also indicates that roughly one-quarter (26%) have avoided making a purchase because the company in question was not socially responsible.
The survey also reveals that 6 in 10 feel that it’s important to buy from socially responsible companies and that close to one-third plan to spend more with socially responsible companies in the year ahead. These figures mark a decline from the prior year, but only a very slight one.
While Millennials are typically seen as the consumer segment most drawn to corporate social responsibility (CSR) considerations, the Good.Must.Grow survey points to a different group: women. (This is supported by other research surrounding CSR’s impact on purchase decisions.)
Indeed, women were considerably more likely than men to feel it’s important to buy from socially responsible companies (67% vs. 52%) and to report having done so in the prior year (69% vs. 59%). Likewise, a greater proportion planned to spend more with such companies in the coming year (34% vs. 26%).
But do consumers actually follow through with such plans? The survey results suggest that most do, but certainly not all: 60% of those who planned to spend more responsibly in 2015 achieved that goal, down from close to three-quarters in the 2 years prior.
Cost is proving to be one of the bigger hindrances to spending on socially responsible goods, cited by 40% of respondents.
As for the most socially responsible brands? When consumers were asked to name one company or organization that is socially responsible, TOMS emerged as the brand top-of-mind for the largest number of respondents, followed by Red Cross, Starbucks, Goodwill and Microsoft.