Journal of Management Information and Decision Sciences (Print ISSN: 1524-7252; Online ISSN: 1532-5806)

Research Article: 2020 Vol: 23 Issue: 4

FACTORS AFFECTING GREEN COSMETICS PURCHASE INTENTION

Shafig AL-Haddad, Princess Sumaya University for Technology

Alaa Awad, Princess Sumaya University for Technology

Diala Albate, Princess Sumaya University for Technology

Ibrahim Almashhadani, Princess Sumaya University for Technology

Wasan Dirani, Princess Sumaya University for Technology

Citation Information: AL-Haddad, S., Awad, A., Albate, D., Almashhadani, I., & Dirani, W. (2020). Factors affecting green cosmetics purchase intention. Journal of Management Information and Decision Sciences, 23(4), 332-342.

Abstract

Green cosmetics recently gained much popularity, although there is still some lack of knowledge and awareness among people towards such products, especially in developing countries; nowadays, many female consumers are moving towards eco-friendly beauty products. Thus, this study aims to explore the purchase intention of female consumers in Jordan towards eco-friendly products with the effect of three selected dimensions of brand equity; which are brand awareness, brand loyalty, and perceived quality. The quantitative method was adopted to obtain the necessary information for the research; the study sample consisted of 107 female consumers, aged 20 and above. The data were collected using an online questionnaire, which was distributed on different social media platforms. SPSS software was used to analyse the collected data. The findings exhibited that all the antecedent variables had a significant positive effect on the consequent variables; further, purchase intention had the highest mean. Findings from this research could eventually furnish assistance to future and even existing cosmetics manufacturers to enhance their performance and boost sales, while keeping pace with a nation that is going green.

Keywords

Green Cosmetics, Eco-friendly Products, Beauty Products, Purchase Intention, Brand Equity.

Introduction

The awareness towards a healthy life and green products is on the rise, resulting in an exponential growth in consumers’ consciousness of the risk of using synthetic chemicals. This has boosted the need for a healthier lifestyle. Moreover, organic and natural beauty products, which include different types, such as skincare, haircare, oral care, colour cosmetics, deodorants, toiletries, and feminine hygiene products (Ghazali et al., 2017). Trending topics in health increased the consumers’ demand for healthy cosmetics, which would be gentle on the skin and reduce the harm to the environment (Lin et al., 2018).

Furthermore, consumers recently trended to give further attention to safe cosmetics and such products that can be relevant to environmental and social responsibility (Yang, 2017). According to Lin et al. (2018) natural ingredients, eco-friendly packaging, and ethics have been given attention by cosmetics consumers because due to sustainable issues. Allergy and skin damage problems that have resulted from using synthetic beauty products are a reason to raise the ecological concern among consumers regarding cosmetic products (Pudaruth et al., 2015).

Natural ingredients that protect the environment is a terminology that was defined by green cosmetics consumers, which are being purchased for personal and environmental purposes (Lin et al., 2018). Moreover, the awareness towards environmental issues and green consumption trends have signified a crucial necessity for researches in green cosmetics markets (Yang, 2017). Therefore, taking into consideration issues and values in terms of organic and natural beauty products decision-making could guarantee a deeper insight into green products consumers, which would provide theoretical and practical importance for marketers (Ghazali et al., 2017).

Thereafter, this study explores the Jordanian females’ purchase intention towards green cosmetics, to assess their willingness to purchase those products; and their awareness to the brand name, loyalty to the preferred brand, and the quality that would be perceived. Moreover, female consumers possess a respectable purchasing power, and their attitudes towards ecological consumption for cosmetic products are significant due to their increasing concerns about safety and health issues (Pudaruth et al., 2015).

To the best of our knowledge; researches on this topic are limited, especially in Jordan. According to Lin et al. (2018), green cosmetics is a topic that had become an interesting title to be discussed by media and cosmetic manufacturers. Furthermore, green cosmetics market in Jordan is an emerging market. This research could introduce a good insight for the Jordanian marketers of beauty brands, to get a clear glance about the importance of these products. Indeed, the stakeholders in cosmetic businesses should have more insight about the advantages and benefits of using green cosmetics, and light must be shed on such relevant topics by more researchers.

Statement of the Problem

The decreasing amount of natural resources, waste generation, serious climate change, and air pollution are some of the main environmental problems we are facing nowadays (Tukker et al., 2010). Eco-friendly products or green products are meant to mitigate the environmental impact once they are being consumed. Moreover, green products are attractive to organizations because of green issues and social responsibility, as they became of an interest by consumers (Oliver & Lee, 2010).

Furthermore, females’ demand for organic and natural beauty products is growing because of their engagement towards a sustainable lifestyle, and their belief in natural cosmetics that would harmonize their self-image, and decrease any related health risks (Pudaruth et al., 2015). Nevertheless, there has been a rising concern recently towards beauty products and cosmetics; causing allergies, skin damage, aging skin and many other health problems (Pudaruth et al., 2015).

Therefore, this research attempts to inspect the purchase intention of female consumers, which are located in Jordan toward green cosmetics, concerning the impact of some selected elements of brand equity, which are; brand awareness, brand loyalty, and perceived quality.

Research Objectives

The current study seeks to examine the effect of three antecedent variables, (Brand awareness, Brand loyalty, and Perceived quality) and the purchase intention of Jordanian females toward green cosmetics. Findings from this study will eventually provide assistance to existing and future cosmetic manufacturers in order to gain higher customers’ satisfaction, as it will shed light on knowledge gaps regarding the topic in hand inside and outside of the Jordanian market, moreover, enriching customers’ shopping behaviours, thus, increasing their revenue.

Research Questions

This study seeks to answer the following questions.

What is the effect of brand awareness on consumers’ purchase intention towards green cosmetics in Jordan?

What is the effect of brand loyalty on consumers’ purchase intention towards green cosmetics in Jordan?

What is the effect of perceived quality on consumers’ purchase intention towards green cosmetics in Jordan?

Literature Review

The reviewed literature for each element is presented in the following section:

Consumers’ Purchase Intention

As defined by the literature, consumer’s purchase intention is the endeavour to obtain a service or a product, but not particularly mean the presence of a buying behaviour (Diallo, 2012). It was further suggested that customers’ feelings and behaviours towards a service/product could influence their intentions of buying a product (Das, 2014). It was suggested that the decisions that are made by female customers are influenced by emotions (Brand), service (Retail environment) and lastly experience (Shopping). Thus, retailers must consider all three variables in order to attract and please consumers (Granot et al., 2010).

Furthermore, when there is a favourable behaviour towards a certain product, most probably there will be an engaging behaviour towards that product (Ajzen & Fishbein, 1980). Many studies shed light on the purchasing intention towards green and organic products, which showed greater buying intentions when there were more favourable attitudes (Tarkiainen & Sundqvist, 2005; Kim & Chung, 2011; Van Loo et al., 2013, as cited by Ghazali et al., 2017). Prior studies also found that a positive effect was present between intentions, attitudes, and the frequency to repurchase and consume those products (Van Loo et al., 2013).

Brand Awareness

Aaker (1991) described the brand awareness as a chance that a potential customer can recognize a brand that belongs to a particular product category. In addition, Shahid et al. (2017) defined brand awareness as the assessment of the brand’s ability to be recalled by customers. Keller and Lehmann (2003) stated a point of view about customer-based brand equity, which was explained as a distinctive outcome of brand knowledge or awareness on consumers’ responses to the marketing efforts of the brand. Moreover, Gustafson and Chabot (2007) posited that a brand with a strong and well-defined rank of awareness, it indicates that the brand acquires a good and a well-known reputation in the marketplace, and this is more reasonable to consumers.

MacDonald and Sharp (2000) asserted that brand awareness affects consumer’s decision in two manners: (1) brand awareness increases the prospect for the brand to be recognized and put in the consideration set, (2) brand awareness could be used or utilized as an examination to make a purchase decision. Furthermore, according to Keller and Lehmann (2003), there are three values provided by brand awareness regarding the buyer decision process, which is: learning benefit, choice benefit, and consideration benefit.

Brand awareness and consumers’ purchase intention

The results of the research that was conducted by (Lee et al., 2019) affirmed that brand awareness has a positive significant effect on consumers’ purchase intention, which were consistent with prior researches that have already confirmed the positive relationship between brand awareness and consumers’ purchase intention (Hakala et al., 2012; Malik et al., 2013; Njuguna, 2014).

Additionally, it has been confirmed that brand awareness would affect consumers’ purchase intention because it increases the prospect for the brand to be put in the consideration set (Keller & Lehmann, 1993). Therefore, presenting the supposed hypothesis number (1):

H1: There is a significant positive effect of brand awareness on consumer’s purchase intention towards green cosmetics.

Brand Loyalty

Brand loyalty describes customers’ connection with a certain brand, as customers show through their usual purchase intention despite pressure from competitors (Malik et al., 2013). Through a frequent purchase of the same brand, or a preference to choose a certain brand despite other brands, brand loyalty is built (Çal & Adams, 2014). Further, the significance of loyal customers would be represented by four factors: (1) a barrier to entry, (2) support for a price premium, (3) taking time to respond to innovations in the market, and (4) protection for product price in opposition to competitors’ prices (Aaker, 1996).

Alhaddad (2014) asserted that brand loyalty has been discussed broadly in the marketing literature because of its significant role in marketing science. Furthermore, brand loyalty is a significant element as owners highly cherish such concepts for sustaining the competitive advantages in the market (Chan & Mansori, 2016).

Brand loyalty and consumers’ purchase intention

The effect of brand loyalty on consumers’ purchase intention in the literature review showed a positive significance for diverse products. Anderson et al. (2014) stated that brand loyalty has a positive association with consumers’ intention towards shopping from retail Facebook pages, and their findings was consistent with other researches that studied the effect of brand loyalty on purchase intention towards beauty products (Hanzaee & Andervazh, 2012; Lee et al., 2019). Therefore, presenting hypothesis (2):

H2: There is a significant positive effect of brand loyalty on consumer’s purchase intention towards green cosmetics.

Perceived Quality

Perceived quality was explained in the literature as the evaluation of consumers’ overall distinction of the brand, and this evaluation is based whether on intrinsic elements as performance and durability or extrinsic elements as brand name (Asshidin et al., 2016). Furthermore, buying a product or a service at different prices would be motivated by perceived quality and influenced by some elements such as service quality or durability of the products. The perceived quality should also be instilled in consumers’ mind in order to boost the purchase intention or purchase rate of the product or service (Gunawardane, 2015).

Asshidin et al. (2016) posited that perceived quality adds value to consumers by awarding them a motive to purchase and distinguish the company’s brand from competitors. Perceived quality for a consumer who is about to buy organic products, is directly connected to the quality of features that are included in that product (Mohammad & b Baharun, 2017).

Perceived quality and consumers’ purchase intention

The connection between perceived quality and purchase intention in reviewed literature exhibited various findings. Ashton et al. (2010) affirmed that perceived quality positively affects the consumers’ purchase intention towards hotel restaurant dining. And their results were consistent with other researches that tested the effect of perceived quality on purchase intention towards skincare products (Lee et al., 2019).

In contrast, Chin and Harizan (2017) believed that perceived quality did not have a significant effect on consumers’ intention to buy cosmetic products. Similarly, Mohammad and b Baharun (2017) asserted that consumers do not consider the quality as a reason to intent to buy eco-friendly beauty products even though it is highly perceived. Therefore, presenting hypothesis (3):

H3: There is a significant positive effect of perceived quality on consumer’s purchase intention towards green cosmetics.

Theoretical Development

The rationale of this study is presented in the following section, the theory of consumption values model (TCV):

Many purchase behaviour models were developed over the years; to accommodate the different behaviours of individuals in the purchase decision-making cycle (Yeo et al., 2016). Major contributions have been made by Sheth et al. (1991) which explained how people judge a particular product/service or use it (Sheth et al., 1991). The theory also proposed that consumers bring certain values to certain products, which would eventually alter their purchasing attitudes (Ramkissoon et al., 2009). Thus, it enables marketers to examine the underlying reasons behind those choices (Gimpel, 2011).

Functional value

In literature, the functional value was defined to be the functional benefits (quality and price) of the brand or the product (Doyle & Stern, 2006). In this research, perceived quality is proposed to study its effect on purchase intention towards green cosmetics.

Conditional value

The conditional value was described as the set of circumstances faced by the consumer (Sheth et al., 1991). Which would lead to encourage or control a decision (Hung & Hsieh, 2010). This will eventually affect customer perceived value, which will directly influence their level of satisfaction (Hwnag & Kim, 2007; Zeithaml, 1988, as cited in Yeo et al., 2016), which influences customers’ behavioural outcomes (brand loyalty, behavioural usage intentions, and customer satisfaction) (Yang & Peterson, 2004). In this research, brand loyalty is proposed to study its effect on purchase intention towards green cosmetics.

Epistemic value

It was defined that epistemic value is the state of being aware of the usefulness of a product, it drives curiosity, and to satisfy a thirst for knowledge (Sheth et al., 1991). Consumers may choose an alternative due to they are bored, or have a desire to know more about a certain product; thus, a consumer might purchase green cosmetics to gain a new experience or in its mind; green cosmetics might offer a unique experience or satisfy a certain need (Yeo et al., 2016). In this research, brand awareness is proposed to study its effect on purchase intention towards green cosmetics.

Research Model Development

The model of this study has been developed by researchers based on the reviewed literature (Ashton et al, 2010; Mohammad & b Baharun, 2017; Yang, 2017; Lee et al., 2019), and Figure 1 shows below.

Figure 1 The Research Model

Research Methodology

With regard to the methodology of this research, an online survey questionnaire (Google Forms) was randomly distributed via social media platforms (Facebook groups, WhatsApp, Twitter, and LinkedIn). Furthermore, this technique was conducted as it is considered a non-costly way to gather data; besides, the questionnaire was online to skip the data coding due to a tight schedule. The study sample was a total of 107 female consumers, who were aged 20 and above years old, all of which were from Jordan. The questionnaire comprised of 17 items to assess the dependent and independent variables; the questionnaire was quoted and developed from a study that was done by Lee and Leh (2011). The 7-point Likert scale was used to assess all items excluding the demographic variables across the survey, the measurement scale for all variables was ranging from 1=strongly disagree to 7=strongly agree. The data were further analysed using the statistical tool, SPSS, including descriptive analysis, reliability test, frequency tests, and regression test. To ensure the validity of the questionnaire. Then, the data were further analysed using the statistical tools, SPSS, including Cronbach's alpha test, descriptive statistics, and regression test.

Research Analysis and Findings

This part exhibits the results that were found, where SPSS software was hired to analyse the data.

Reliability

Cronbach alpha was employed to measure internal consistency. Cronbach alpha coefficient reviews how efficiently the various items in the questionnaire are complementary and how they go along with each other in their assessment of several aspects of the same construct (AL-Tahat & Bwaliez, 2015). According to Gliem and Gliem (2003), if the coefficient alpha is closer to 1.0, it will indicate a better reliability of the internal consistency of the items on the scale. Thereafter, The Cronbach’s alpha test was respectively (0.905 for Brand Loyalty, 0.849 for Perceived Quality, 0.859 for Purchase Intention, and 0.733 for Brand Awareness). Which shows a valid measurement and a reliable scale.

Demographics of Participants

The sample for this research consisted of 107 female consumers, 10% of these respondents were above 40, 28% were aged in the range of 31-40, and a further 62% were aged from 20-30 years old. Consequently, females who are charged (601-800) JOD per Month were the most to respond to the presented questionnaire.

Multiple Regression Analysis and Descriptive Statistics

To test the hypotheses; H1, H2, and H3, multiple regression analysis in SPSS software was used. Table 1 exhibits the significance of each antecedent variable in explaining the consequent variable; where the unstandardized coefficient (B) value illustrates both the correlation and magnitude between female purchase intention towards green cosmetics and its factors such as, brand awareness, brand loyalty, and perceived quality. The positive rate of Beta means that there is a positive relationship between predictors and the dependent variable, as the results for the significance rates for brand awareness, brand loyalty, and perceived quality were less than 0.05 (P<0.05), the results confirmed that these elements have a significant positive effect on purchase intention towards green cosmetics in Jordan.

Table 1 Coefficients
Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig.
B Std. Error Beta
1 (Constant) 1.281 0.312   4.104 0.000
Brand Loyalty 0.267 0.074 0.320 3.596 0.000
Perceived Quality 0.337 0.088 0.348 3.851 0.000
Brand Awareness 0.210 0.069 0.243 3.046 0.003

As indicated in Table 2 below, the multiple regression analysis exhibited that adjusted R square in the model was 0.644, which indicates that approximately 64% of a total variation in female purchase intention towards eco-friendly beauty products is explained by elements such as, brand awareness, brand loyalty, and perceived quality.

Table 2 The Model Summary
Model R R Square Adjusted R Square Std. error of the Estimate
1 0.809a 0.654 0.644 0.66371

In summation, the data above confirm a statistically positive effect of brand loyalty on female purchase intention towards green cosmetics in Jordan. These findings were consistent with other findings that were found by Hanzaee and Andervazh (2012) and Lee et al. (2019). Also, the analysis showed that perceived quality affects the purchase intention. This result agreed with prior studies were done by Ashton et al. (2010) and Lee et al. (2019). But the study argued other researches which asserted that the perceived quality did not have an effective role to increase the consumers’ purchase intention (Chin & Harizan, 2017; Mohammad & b Baharun, 2017). Regarding the effect of brand awareness on purchase intention, this research consisted with previous studies that have affirmed the presence of a positive effect (Hakala et al., 2012; Malik et al., 2013; Njuguna, 2014; Lee et al., 2019).

Moreover, the descriptive statistics analysis resulted that the highest mean of variables refers to purchase intention with a value of (5.45), which is presented in Table 3.

Table 3 Descriptive Statistics of Variables
Variables Minimum Maximum Mean Std. Deviation Variance
Brand Loyalty 2.06 7.00 5.0853 1.33290 1.777
Perceived Quality 1.50 7.00 5.2804 1.14961 1.322
Purchase Intention 1.75 7.00 5.4579 1.11301 1.239
Brand Awareness 1.67 7.00 4.9377 1.29110 1.667

Discussion

As mentioned previously, the main objective of this study was to identify the effect of awareness, loyalty, and perceived quality on purchase intention towards eco-friendly beauty products in Jordan. To accomplish this, a quantitative cross-sectional survey has been used to find out the presence of a possible effect between antecedent variables and consequent variables. The responses to the questionnaires were then analysed using SPSS, and the following results were found:

H1: (There is a significant positive effect of brand awareness on consumer’s purchase intention towards green cosmetics); was accepted. One explanation to this is that more awareness towards eco-friendly and green products is growing, especially among people who were aged between 20-30 years old. Furthermore, the mean of brand awareness was quite high (μ = 4.9377), and the level of significance between purchase intention and brand awareness was (α ≤ 0.05) which indicates a positive impact.

H2: (There is a significant positive effect of brand loyalty on consumer’s purchase intention towards green cosmetics), was also accepted; at a (α ≤ 0.05) significance level.

H3: (There is a significant positive effect of perceived quality on consumer’s purchase intention towards green cosmetics). Was also accepted; at a (α ≤ 0.05) significance level; this means that female consumers may desire a better quality in eco-friendly products.

Conclusions

As shown in the previous discussion and concerning the results derived from the analysis. More emphasis on Brand Awareness should be put, and this can be done by establishing and initiating new marketing plans and strategies to inform people about the concept of Green Cosmetics. Green Cosmetics should always be manufactured to meet these desires and criteria; that was shaped by consumers. Which can also differentiate green cosmetics apart from other cosmetics that are chemically based. Generally, if consumers were aware of the green cosmetics brand and decide to start purchasing eco-friendly beauty products that have superior quality, there will be a chance that Brand Loyalty is about to be built. As also observed, the age group that had dominated the answers were the ages between 20-30 years, which shall be addressed in a tailored way to suit their needs and expectations. In summation, this study established a base for cosmetics companies in the green industry to find out more about their potential customers.

Theoretical and Practical Implications

Green marketing and green products purchases were only introduced in the late 1960s, nevertheless, studies about the topic at hand only appeared in the late 80s. Accordingly, green products are a new topic that needs more research to be done (Smith & Brower, 2012). Moreover, green cosmetics gained much popularity caused by a rising level of buyers (Kumar, 2010).

Therefore, and upon the review of the literature, it was suggested to implement the research topic in other countries (Lee et al., 2019). Accordingly, and to the best of our knowledge, this research was the first of its kind to be based in Jordan, in order to build a base for other researchers in the area. Moreover, based on prior suggestions by other researchers, brand loyalty was recommended to be included in the research model (Ghazali et al., 2017), thus, it was decided to address brand loyalty in this research to support existing researches and fill gaps in the literature regarding the matter. Nevertheless, addressing brand loyalty can also help marketers understand the effect of brand loyalty on green cosmetics in order to establish a stronger customer loyalty to the brand. Thus, helping firms increase their sales rate.

Moreover, the study results contribute to the cosmetics industry by having powerful implications on marketing, as those results can help marketers establish a strong customer-base to strongly position eco-friendly products in the market and to generate positive attitudes and interests towards them.

Limitation and Future Researches

Despite the efforts taken to conduct this study, like any other research, some limitations existed. Based on the fact that findings may not be generalized, as this research was conducted only to the cosmetic industry in Jordan, and in very few other countries by other researchers. Moreover, and upon the review of the literature; Future research is recommended to include other ethnicities and to apply the concept of green products to other industries. Furthermore, it was decided in this research not to address the presence of the perceived price as a moderator, or the influence of customers’ satisfaction levels as a mediator; therefore, future research are also invited to consider their effect.

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