Fast Fashion Retailer Demographics’ Environmental Attitudes…

Fast Fashion Retailer Demographics’ Environmental Attitudes Shifting

Garbage Patch; and “Lonely Whale”, co-founded and fronted by actor Adrian Grenier, has done huge amounts to drive consumer attitude shifts around single plastic usage – namely the social pariah of 2018: the Plastic Straw.

Palm Oil has been the latest environmental outcry, with Iceland’s Christmas short film with Greenpeace again taking the message to the masses and growing searches around palm oil by 516% YoY with 2017.

Vegan searches are up 30.36% YoY, and equally ‘free rangesearches are up 47.9% YoY. Whether you’re eating meat or not, there’s no doubt that the connection to what we are eating is growing stronger.

With reports of 235m items of clothes sent to landfill in 2017 (Source: The House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee), and the realisation that synthetic fibres such as polyester, nylon, acrylic, all of which are forms of plastic and account for ~60% of our clothes worldwide, contribute to ocean plastic pollution through laundry washing; concerns are growing over the sustainability of fast fashion.

What impact is this attitude shift having on consumer spending? What impact could fast fashion retailers see as the curtain lifts on the reality of our consumer habits?

We can see an online growth in second hand searches within the Shopping & Classified industry, growing 16.84% YoY from 2017 to 2018. Similarly ‘vintagesearches rose 27.38% YoY and a rise in vintage companies online like, who saw a YoY growth in visits of 64%.

It’s never been more important to look beyond the usual age and gender demographics of your audience, but to understand their attitudes and sentiment. Without understanding what is on their minds at this very moment, we struggle to be relevant or considered.

As an example; take a look at the below 4 big fast fashion retailers and despite very similar demographics, the large differences in current priorities of their customers:   

How could retailers best use this information to reassure their customers and how can they support their customers desires to be ethically and environmentally responsible?

Giles Longhurst
Managing Director EMEA & APAC

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