Study: Green Strategies Not a Fad in Retail

MIAMI -- According to a new research report from RSR Research, an environmentally friendly focus is not a "fad," but rather a strategic initiative being employed by the best-performing retailers across all corners of the enterprise.

Despite economic concerns, retailers remain more committed than ever to environmental issues, according to the report. While cost savings dominate the motivators behind retailers' investment in "green" strategies, RSR research found winning retailers place equal weight on brand-building opportunities, positioning themselves to capture demand from consumers seeking environmentally friendly companies—not just in the products they sell, but as a member of their community.

"In this economy, retailers across the spectrum of the industry are paying attention to the expectations of consumers, whether about assortment, price, service levels in the store or cross-channel capabilities," stated Brian Kilcourse, RSR managing partner and co-author of the report. "Green retailing has recently become another legitimate differentiator in the brand equation that creates significant, quick-hit return-on-investment opportunities as well."

RSR's "Real-World Green: The Role of Environmental Savings in Retail," sponsored by Intel and presented in partnership with The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA), is derived from a survey conducted among 94 retailers April through July.

"Those retailers whose sales are already outperforming their peers have a much different approach to green retailing," added Steve Rowen, RSR managing partner and report co-author. "They view environmental sustainability holistically, as a baseline component to any new or existing practice throughout the enterprise. Their underperforming peers still tackle green efforts on a project-oriented basis."

The RSR report, in its entirety, not only highlights what steps these winning retailers have taken within their own organizations, but also provides baseline recommendations for fellow retailers based on these companies’ leading behaviors.

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