This year, according to Nielsen, 689,000 Fayetteville area consumers will spend $192 million on eco-friendly goods and services. Sales for sustainable products have grown 20% since 2014, a trend expected to continue into 2021.
Tensie Whelan and Randi Kronthal-Sacco of the New York University Stern Center for Sustainable Business write in the Harvard Business Review, "Consumers are voting with their dollars against unsustainable brands. The legacy companies that will thrive are those that accept this shift and are willing to pivot.”
For North Carolina small business owners who are skeptical that sustainability affects purchase decisions, retail analyst Stacey Widlitz provided this advice, recently, in Forbes.
"Retailers only need to look to IBM's recent study, in association with the National Retail Federation, to understand just how fast consumer priorities are changing," says Ms. Widlitz. "Findings from the study revealed nearly 60% of consumers surveyed are willing to change their shopping habits to reduce environmental impact. For the nearly 80% of respondents who said sustainability is important to them over 70% would pay a premium of 35% on average."
To compete for a share of consumers' spending on green goods and services requires local small business owners to advertise.