While the recent economic recession has changed the green buying habits of many Americans, the number of die hard green consumers has increased, according to newly published research. In a November report by Grail Research, researchers found that overall, the enthusiasm of the pro-green consumer segment of the population has remained despite the prevailing economic pressures many Americans are facing.
Overall, the research group found that 9 percent of all consumers identify as "dark green" – meaning that most of the products they buy are environmentally friendly. This represented an increase from figures found in 2009, which indicated that 8 percent of the population fell into this group.
This data suggests that tried-and-true eco-warriors have been spreading the word about their way of life and how they make their buying decisions, and that they have been successful at converting friends and family to this method of thinking. However, the report said that companies could do more to help consumers make the best green choices. It suggested that many businesses fail to advertise their green characteristics, which may entice more buyers away from more harmful products.
Researchers said that green messaging on the package is one of the first places consumers gain information on not only that specific product, but also on how it compares to their other buying options. As such, this simple exchange of information can prove highly valuable at changing the purchasing habits of consumers.
Businesses could benefit by putting certain information on the package itself. For example, the report indicated that the display of natural ingredients, green certifications and the recyclability of a product favored most heavily into the consumer perception of green products.