Customers choose cost-saving shipping over sustainable delivery

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Ahead of The Delivery Conference on 26th February, I’d like to share some insights into consumers’ attitudes on sustainable delivery and packaging.

While most consumers are concerned about the environment, more than a third (39%) wouldn’t be willing to pay €0.10 (£0.8) extra for sustainable delivery, suggest new report by international post corporation (IPC).

Some 33k adults across 41 countries were surveyed on their attitudes towards environmentally-friendly retailing. This year, a new topic of sustainability was added to the analysis to assess consumer interest in both sustainable packaging and delivery.

Some (48%) of the surveyed consumers are in favour of their delivery to be carbon-neutral, with a smaller (34%) group of polled shoppers “disagree.” However, 39% of shoppers are saying that they wouldn’t pay €0.10 (£0.8) for eco-friendly delivery, with only 18% “strongly agree” to pay extra pennies for ‘green’ delivery. Realistically speaking, when shoppers are buying on a marketplace would they check if sellers’ delivery is ‘green’ or inexpensive?

The report also suggests that 60% of respondents are in favour of their packaging to be sustainable, in comparison to 22% of respondents who “disagree.” However, 32% of surveyed shoppers say that they wouldn’t be willing to pay €0.10 (£0.8) for eco-friendly packaging, with only 22% saying that they “strongly agree” to pay extra.

What are you doing in your business to balance sustainability and cost management?

7 Responses

  1. if online shoppers were really concerned about the eco system they would not shop on line in the first place

  2. You can order your online shop on Sainsburys for example where there is another delivery close to you (little green van sign), we do that….however hardly anyone else does am told, all price and to suit them..
    All those 3.5 ton vans running about create a lot of fumes.
    Also branded packaging should be BANNED as it stops it being used not like companies who use it….
    People can bang on about their FREE delivery (nothing is free) and someone always pays the price.
    Let’s be honest does not matter what the warnings are, people live in their debt bubbles and simply do not care (till it is too late).
    Am not a member of the green party YET, but I have started to take notice, even growing some of my own food…:)…

  3. I re-use all packaging which comes into the house. I feel a lot less guilty about that than I used to at first, and I have had no complaints. Also I have bought tesa paper tape which I sometimes use, and I am going back to proper cellulose tape (though Sellotape aren’t very clear (!) on its credentials, surprisingly). Now for the clear packaging tape …

  4. Once again “Our survey said…” A survey can show what you want it to if you ask questions in the right way, not that I ever get asked.

    Today I had a complaint from a customer about using so much polystyrene in my packing, I let them know that the packing is actually biodegrade and they were happy with that.

    But… The item they purchased was a small £10.00 item that they have brought from me once a month for the last year+, my profit is £0.50p per sale. If they are so concerned with the environment why do they not buy 2-4 in one purchase? It would make me happier / more profit, and I am sure it would be better for the environment.

    They did not mention the plastic packing tape.

    Tesa paper tape, I have looked at using an environmentally friendly packing tape, but at what cost? Just had a look at the Tesa and it redirected me to an Amazon page to buy, the cost is £12.89 for 1X 50m x 50mm. Is that right? I can not see that it is for more than one.

    I pay 48p for 1X 48MM X 66M roll of tape and buy in 24 at a time, so my cost to be environmentally friendly will be £297.84 (26X) more to do the same job.

    We use less tape using crash-lock boxes, no need to tape the bottom of the box, we are also looking to move to easy seal closing.

  5. We have tried the eco packagaing route…. major fail.
    1, The biodegradable items you paid extra for…. The bubble wrap, the air cushions, the poly chips etc… Well the truth is very few councils recycle them and so they end up in the landfill or burnt just like the normal stuff. It just cost you more.
    2, The cardboard box you reused…. well i kept being told about how fancy new packaging is what people want. We have even had some complaints when we have reused a box for something else!
    3, Packaging tape… compare the eco stuff to normal and the £££ is eye opening. Would cutomers even notice? Proberly not… until i increase prices to cover it. Again would it even be recycled etc… proberly not.
    So we unashamedly resued what we can, bubble wrap, old jiffy bags etc for cushioning, boxes for outer packaging etc. We have even added a page to our website to expalin what we are doing and what we have tried etc.
    All the time there is a deliberate loop hole in the law that encourages councils to burn waste rather than landfill it, the recycling market for anything but the bog standard paper, card, tins and bottles will be dead. So the whole point of buying biodegradable stuff is wiped out.
    Now packaging made from recycled waste… well that is atleast one step int he right direction.
    So to be honest i think people like the ‘feel good’ factor of eco stuff, but deep down they rarely want to pay for it and rarely think beyond the initial thought of ‘oh good it ‘s eco friendly’…


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