By Joseph Staples // SWNS
Most Gen Z and Millennials prefer to buy from ethical brands that truly care about people and the planet, according to a new survey.
A new poll of 2,000 US young adults found that younger Americans feel brands need to be held to a higher standard — 80% are likely to base their purchases on a brand’s mission or purpose.
When shopping, many actively seek out brands that are eco-friendly (51%), use naturally sourced ingredients (49%) and have a strong social media presence (44%).
Commissioned by Tom’s of Maine and conducted by OnePoll, the survey also found that nearly four in five (78%) said it’s important to them to buy products that are organic, natural, and environmentally conscious, and 82% make an effort to only buy products that use naturally sourced or naturally derived ingredients.
Beyond products, 74% of respondents shared they are likely to boycott brands for crossing an ethical line and going against their personal values.
Those surveyed said they’ll willingly boycott brands that mistreat or underpay workers (61%), use or mistreat animals for production and testing (59%), are considered “corrupt” (58%) or that are associated with racism/non-inclusive (51%).
“Now more than ever, consumers are looking to buy from brands that are not just talking about change, but creating it,” said Mallory Strange, associate brand manager for Tom’s of Maine. “These insights show that Millennials and Gen Z shoppers are increasingly intentional with their purchase decisions, making transparency, sustainable practices and community engagement critical to attracting customers and creating a brighter future for all people.”
While sustainability is front of mind for Gen Zers and millennials while shopping, a quarter said the quality of products was the most important aspect to consider before making a purchase decision.
A majority (85%) would rather spend money on something expensive, but of higher quality, than something cheap and lower quality and nearly 60% said they frequently look at a product’s label and ingredients list before purchasing.
Meanwhile, 78% of those surveyed said they would be willing to go over their personal budget to buy products they love, with the most appealing types of purchases being clothing (51%), clothing accessories (46%), food (43%) and self-care (41%).
When asked what specific products they would spend more or less money on, respondents said they’d spend more on toothpaste (74%), deodorant (70%), home décor (71%) and entertainment (70%), and less on phones (38%), shampoo/conditioners (36%) and clothing (35%).
And when making clothing purchases specifically, 59% prioritize comfort over style, while 23% prioritize style over comfort.
“People shouldn’t have to compromise quality when choosing products, especially in personal care,” added Strange. “One way to do that is to look for products made by Certified B Corporations.
“The B Corp certification is a leading corporate standard for transparency, accountability, social responsibility, and environmental performance that is managed by the nonprofit organization B Labs.”
TOP 5 THINGS GEN Z AND MILLENNIALS WANT FROM BRANDS
- They are eco-friendly - 51%
- They use naturally sourced or derived ingredients - 49%
- They have a strong social media presence - 44%
- They are irritant-free and abrasive-free - 44%
- They are made with my body type in mind - 27%
This random double-opt-in survey of 2,000 Americans, aged 18 – 26 and 27 – 42 was commissioned by Tom’s of Maine between June 28 and July 7, 2023. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose team members are members of the Market Research Society and have corporate membership to the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).