Don’t put those green products in a separate aisle

Don’t put those green products in a separate aisle

Most people simply never visit the “green ghetto” in grocery stores.

Two keys to selling green products is to make the purchase experience affordable and convenient.

So why would anyone go out of their way to make that green buying experience inconvenient?

Turns out that’s exactly what we’ve done by creating those “green product” specialty sections in the supermarkets.

In our Eco Pulse ’13 study, 60 percent of shoppers said that they most often find the green products they buy in the main aisles.

Only 40 percent said they look for these items in the specialty “green products” section. In other words, most shoppers simply don’t venture over to the green ghetto.

Even the Actives, the segment we’ve identified as the greenest in their attitudes and purchase practices, are more likely to buy green products on the main aisles. That’s because they, like everyone else, primarily buy a mix of green products made by both specialty green brands and conventional name brands. The specialty section usually carries only the specialty green brands, so the traditional arrangement makes shopping a less convenient, two-step process.

This also makes green products seem less normative – which is a particular barrier to Skeptics, who are risk averse and reluctant to try things that seem too different from what they usually buy.

Traditional green merchandising is particularly limiting adoption of greener food products. When asked in which categories they are seriously searching for greener options, consumers indicated modest increases in search activity for greener home-cleaning, paper and personal care products, but a significant (10 percent) upswing in interest in greener food and beverages.

So consumers are searching for green products.

We shouldn’t make that search harder than it has to be by exiling green products to aisles that shoppers don’t visit.



Posted on

September 11, 2013

About the Author

Lee Ann Head

Lee Ann is a former contributor to Shelton Insights.

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