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An empirical study on the influence of environmental labels on consumers

D'Souza, Clare, Taghian, Mehdi and Lamb, Peter 2006, An empirical study on the influence of environmental labels on consumers, Corporate communications : an international journal, vol. 11, no. 2, pp. 162-173.

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Title An empirical study on the influence of environmental labels on consumers
Author(s) D'Souza, Clare
Taghian, Mehdi
Lamb, Peter
Journal name Corporate communications : an international journal
Volume number 11
Issue number 2
Start page 162
End page 173
Publisher Emerald Group Publishing
Place of publication Bingley, England
Publication date 2006
ISSN 1356-3289
Keyword(s) labelling
green marketing
consumer behaviour
environmental issues
Australia
Summary Purpose - Despite research studies indicating strong support for labelling information, uncertainty remains with respect to how labels influence consumers. This paper attempts to empirically investigate how consumers who differ in terms of environmentalism respond to labels.

Design/methodology/approach - The data were collected on an Australian sample using a structured questionnaire administered on the phone using quantum research (CATI) data collection services. A total of 155 questionnaires were completed and used for data analysis. The data were analysed using both descriptive measures and correlations between variables.

Findings - There appears to be a proportion of consumers that find product labels hard to understand. The research found that there are consumers who will buy green products even if they are lower in quality in comparison to alternative products, but would look for environmental information on labels. With respect to price sensitive green consumers, there appears to be a relationship between price sensitivity and 'always' reading labels as well as indicating that there is 'sufficient' information on product labels to make informed purchase decisions.

Research limitations/implications - It was beyond the scope of the research to account for some of the utilitarian approaches to interpretation or in-depth comprehension of label information. The sample size of 155, although selected using a probability method, may, to some extent, limit the overall accuracy of the results.

Practical implications - Offers some important information on different green consumer segments that would alert managers on how best to position environmental labels. Findings such as 'Satisfied with labels' correlates with 'Labels are accurate', which suggests that businesses need to provide a clear, accurate and easily legible label design to encourage satisfaction with the accuracy of content and the communication aspects of a label.

Originality/value - Contributes to better understanding of green customers purchase intentions and the usefulness of ecological product labels. It offers some insights and assistance to businesses in planning their green product/labelling strategies.
Notes Reproduced with the kind permission of the copyright owner.
Language eng
Field of Research 150599 Marketing not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2006, Emerald Group Publishing
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30008944

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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.