New App Connects Conscious Consumers and Ethical Sellers

Posted by on February 12, 2016 in Entrepreneurship, Tech

appJWe have reported here that consumer demand for ethical goods and services is on the rise; the latest data on consumer behavior confirms this upward trend. According to recent findings by Nielsen, in the past year sales of consumer goods from brands with a demonstrated commitment to sustainability have grown more than four percent globally, while those who do not show any commitment have grown less than one percent. The survey company also found that 66 percent of consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable brands, up from 55% in 2014 and 50% in 2013.

Consumers do have a problem when looking for ethical products: ​that problem​ is ​seller ​credibility. Are retailers telling ​consumers ​the truth about the products they purvey? This is a very important issue for an ethical consumer, who wants to make sure they are supporting really worthy companies​ because they ​want their money to make a difference in the world.

This kind of conundrum inspired Greg Kamphuis, a Canadian entrepreneur, to create a new app to give consumers a better tool to make ethical purchases, a practice he was initially excited about.

“However, after a few Google searches, my enthusiasm waned. Trying to find a trustworthy seller proved tough, finding one that was in my budget made it tougher, and when I finally found one, it was in a different country and the shipping costs were just too much,” says Kamphuis.

So Kamphuis created Buy Better Mall, an app that lists businesses fitting one of five criteria. They must be either a ​​B​ ​Corporation, sell second-hand goods, offer a lifetime warranty, be fair trade certified, or be a purpose-driven ‘citizen company’. This wide-ranging criteria is what makes the app unique, Kamphuis told Just Means.

“The other apps promoting conscious consumerism—and there are not many—are dedicated only to cause-based businesses. Adding businesses to BBM because they are B-Corporations, secondhand, lifetime warrantied, certified Fairtrade, or cause-​based​ ​means that users can find almost any type of product. The positive effects of buying better are distributed even further,” he says.

Image credit: Buy Better Mall

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