Press Release

Simon-Kucher unveils 2024 Global Sustainability Study: Majority willing to pay more for green products

Simon-Kucher, the world’s leading pricing consultancy, has released its 2024 Global Sustainability Study, providing crucial insights into shifting consumer attitudes and behaviors towards sustainability. The study, based on responses from 6,120 consumers across six countries, represents regions covering two billion consumers and 35 percent of the world’s GDP. These findings reveal significant trends in sustainability perception and its impact on purchasing decisions.

Dr. Andreas von der Gathen, co-CEO of Simon-Kucher, commented, "Our study underscores a significant and nuanced shift in consumer behavior towards sustainability. It's heartening to see that over half of consumers are now willing to pay more for sustainable products, up from just over a third two years ago. This shift indicates that sustainability is increasingly becoming a standard consideration in purchasing decisions. However, we must acknowledge that affordability remains a key barrier. Therefore, it is imperative for companies to align their pricing strategies with consumer expectations to ensure that sustainable options are accessible to all. By doing so, we can collectively drive a positive impact towards a more sustainable future."

Key consumer findings:

  • Industry differences: Consumers purchasing goods/services from industries with a tangible link to sustainability, such as Energy, place higher importance on it than when they purchase from sectors like Financial Services.
  • Affordability issues: Affordability remains the primary barrier, with sustainable options still viewed as expensive.
  • Continued importance: 64 percent of consumers rank sustainability as a top-three purchasing consideration, up from previous studies.
  • Improved accessibility: Accessibility barriers for sustainable products have decreased from 25 percent in 2022 to 12 percent in 2024.
  • Consumer research: 70 percent of consumers conduct their own research on sustainability claims before purchasing. However, this number jumps to around 80 percent of consumers conducting their own research when they believe that brands are involved in greenwashing.
  • Willingness to pay: 54 percent of consumers are now willing to pay a premium for sustainable products, up from 35 percent.
  • Decline in perceived importance: For the first time, perceived importance of sustainability has dropped by six percentage points compared to 2022 results, likely driven by factors such as inflation and sustainability becoming table stakes.

Key takeaways for business leaders:

  1. Understand consumer expectations on sustainability: Align your sustainability strategies with the growing consumer demand for eco-friendly products.
  2. Align pricing with consumer willingness to pay: With 54 percent of consumers willing to pay a premium, ensure your pricing strategy reflects the added value of sustainability.
  3. Communicate the added value of sustainability: Clearly convey the benefits and value of sustainable products to address affordability concerns and justify price premiums.
  4. Address affordability barriers: Develop strategies to make sustainable products more affordable, leveraging improved accessibility trends.
  5. Stay ahead of industry trends: Industries like Energy are setting the standard for sustainability; follow their lead to remain competitive.
  6. Leverage consumer research and skepticism: Build trust by ensuring transparency and accuracy in your sustainability claims.

Simon-Kucher’s 2024 Global Sustainability Study underscores the evolving consumer expectations towards sustainability and highlights the need for businesses to adapt. Aligning pricing with consumer willingness to pay, targeting the right customer segments, and effectively communicating the added value of sustainability are critical strategies for success. 

Complete study findings are available upon request, including country splits.

*About the Study: Simon-Kucher 2024 Sustainability Study was conducted in February 2024 by Simon-Kucher. The study surveyed 6,120 consumers across six countries: Australia (N=1,022), Germany (N=1,037), India (N=1,012), Netherlands (N=1,001), UK (N=1,023), and US (N=1,025), including representative quotas set for age, gender, living area, education level, employment status & income level. 

About Simon-Kucher

Simon-Kucher is a global consultancy with more than 2,000 employees in 30 countries. Our sole focus is on unlocking better growth that drives measurable revenue and profit for our clients. We achieve this by optimizing every lever of their commercial strategy – product, price, innovation, marketing, and sales – based on deep insights into what customers want and value. With nearly 40 years of experience in monetization topics of all kinds, we are regarded as the world’s leading pricing and growth specialist.

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Rachel Pope
Press | Boston, USA
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