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Supply Chain News: Do Global Consumers really Want Greener Fulfillment Options?

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Global Survey Finds Interest is Strong, though Convenience Still Trumps Green for Most Consumers

Sept. 13, 2022
SCDigest Editorial Staff
     

Do consumers really want greener efulfillment options?

The data, SCDigest will suggest, has been rather mixed, with some surveys finding consumer do want more green choices from etailers – while it would seem voting with their wallets for ever faster deliveries.

Supply Chain Digest Says...

 

The study found that consumers rated convenience (40%) much more important than environmental impact (23%). However, there was a large group (37%) that said that convenience and environmental impact were equal.

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One of the most recent set of data points: survey results from a major study by logistics software company Descartes Systems, which involved 8000 responses from across 9 countries in Europe, the US and Canada.

Here is some of the data:

Overall, 45% of respondents say that helping the environment is quite/very important in their daily life with only 3% saying it wasn’t important at all. But the results varied by country: France the highest at 56% who thought environment was very important, while Denmark had the lowest, at 27%.

The US score was 42%, about the same as Canada’s 43% score.

However, only 39% of respondents say they regularly or always make purchasing decisions based upon the company’s or product’s environmental impact. But only 11% never make a purchasing decision based upon the product or company’s environmental impact.

The US score here was 35% for commonly making a purchase based on environmental impact, versus 37% for Canada.

Consumers indicated that they would buy more grocery (40%) and clothing and footwear (39%) items from companies that demonstrated their supply chains were more sustainable than the competition.

Consumer respondents said they were quite/very interested in more environmentally-friendly delivery methods. In fact, three of the top four answers involved combining orders or having the seller recommend the most sustainable delivery option, as seen in the chart below from the report.

 

 

Source: Descartes Systems

 

The top choice, based on adding the two scores together (“quite” and “very” important) was for combining all orders for a week and delivering then together, with a combined score of 50%.

Next, at 48%, was having the etailer identify the most environmentally friendly fulfillment option.

 

 

(See More Below)

CATEGORY SPONSOR: SOFTEON

 

 

Next, a significant number of consumers (54%) indicated they would be willing to accept longer lead times from an environmentally friendly company. Longer lead times provide more options to improve the efficiency of the delivery, which almost always results in a lower carbon footprint – and sometimes lower costs to the etailer too.

That may be true as a survey finding, but it doesn’t quite mesh with the popularity of Amazon Prime and its free rapid deliveries.

And indeed, the study found that consumers rated convenience (40%) much more important than environmental impact (23%). However, there was a large group (37%) that said that convenience and environmental impact were equal.

In addition, 20% of respondents indicated they would pay more for a delivery from an environmentally friendly company.

Netting it out, “The biggest challenge to retailers is to abandon the monolithic approaches to home delivery that don’t take advantage of opportunities with more sustainable delivery,” the report concluded, adding that “Consumers will expect sustainable delivery options – and this will grow over time. Not all consumers will care, but the numbers that do can represent a great opportunity to improve bottom line performance and do the right thing for the environment.”

 

Any reaction to this report on consumer interest in greed deliveries? Let us know your thoughts at the Feedback section below.

 

 
 
 
 

 

 

 

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