UAE residents open to sustainable fashion but price still drives purchases

UAE residents open to sustainable fashion but price still drives purchases
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While cost is the biggest influence, many say they would buy sustainable fashion once they know more about it

A vast majority of UAE residents think sustainable manufacturing processes are important when buying fashion products, but price is the major motivation to buy sustainable fashion, new YouGov research reveals.

The sustainable fashion movement – which thinks it is important to gear the fashion industry towards being more ecological and socially just – has gained huge media coverage in recent years. This new data shows that three-quarters (75%) consider sustainability when buying fashion items but it is far behind other factors. Fitting (92%), material quality (92%), design (90%) and price (89%) are all notably more important when deciding what to buy.

Sustainability is considered important

YouGov’s survey shows that while it is less of a motivating factor when making a fashion purchase, three in four (75%) UAE residents are interested in buying sustainable fashion items. However, once again price (54%) is the key driver in what would motivate someone to buy sustainable items, followed by the availability of better styles (52%).

When it comes to factors that could drive buy for sustainable fashion items, in five of seven areas women were more likely than men to be motivated to make these purchases. While the top motivators for men are competitive prices (54%), and better designs (48%), in both cases women are more likely than men to be encouraged by these factors to make a purchase (55% and 59% respectively).

Motivators to buy sustainable fashion

YouGov’s survey suggests that people may be more likely to buy sustainable fashion products if labels pushed their messaging a bit harder. Just under half say they would buy sustainable fashion if the brand shared information on the benefits and impact of sustainability (47%) or set out their sustainability credentials more clearly on their labels (46%). Furthermore, a third (34%) would purchase if they promoted sustainability in their communications.

These motivations work differently across the genders. While women are more likely than men to embrace sustainable fashion after learning about its benefits (51% vs 45%) and about the manufacturing process (53% vs 42%), men are more likely than women to respond to brand communication around sustainability (36% men vs 30% women).

Consumers’ price sensitivity is again evident with nearing two in five people (38%) saying they would be more likely to buy from sustainable fashion brands if they collected reward points for purchases, with women being more likely than men to think so (45 vs 35%).

Just above a fifth (22%) would consider sustainable fashion if it was endorsed by a celebrity or influencer and ends up becoming a fashion trend.

Data collected online by YouGov Omnibus among 1,003 respondents in the UAE between 29th April and 5th May 2019 using YouGov’s panel of over 6 million people worldwide. Data is representative of the adult online population in the country

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