High Streets Initiative · 10 August 2017

Good business ethics determines loyalty of nine in ten high street shoppers

Waitress is serving a cup of tea to a customer sitting at a table in a cafe.
Respondents claimed they would pay higher costs to see a happy workforce
As a small high street business, gaining an edge over large competitors is a vital part of survival. Now, seeing the positive business ethics behind the company appears high on the priorities of shoppers.

According to new survey findings, collected by waste management agency Business Waste, 90 per cent of UK consumers said they always? considered a business? accreditation and record on issues such as tax, treatment of staff and environmental issues.

For almost all respondents, visible hygiene certificates were extremely? important when deciding to visit a food business.

Long-serving, familiar staff could also help a small firm establish itself among bigger businesses, and consumers wanted to see a happy workforce treated well behind the scenes.

I judge a business by how friendly the staff are and whether they seem like they enjoy working there. I don’t mind paying a bit extra for a place with staff who really care, read one survey response.

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With questions around modern employment practices taking headlines throughout 2017, the debate also looks to have engaged shoppers.

with things like zero-hours contracts going around, and all that pollution and tax evasion going on, you can’t trust anyone these days unless theyve got proof they’re really a good company, said Ken Thompson, a high street shopper from Birmingham.

He added: “I want to know where my money’s going so I always look out for certificates to make sure Im in the right place.

When it came to the environment, three-quarters of those surveyed said they wanted to see indications a company was taking care of the planet.

Meanwhile, 45 per cent said they would only consider using a business that paid its taxes in the UK.



Praseeda Nair is an impassioned advocate for women in leadership, and likes to profile business owners, advisors and experts in the field of entrepreneurship and management.

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