Communication and cooperation with consumers are key to sustainable development. This article considers the environmental and user benefits of producing a sustainable product design that enable users' involvement and encourages the use of sustainable products to enhance environmental value. Depending on users' sensitivity to ecodesign for energy-related products, six environment evaluation criteria may structure their perceptions of cell phone attributes (monitor, panel, battery, shell, modeling, lens and fingerprint). Innovative methods are needed for effective communication, as well as to encourage consumer participation in designing sustainable products that satisfy their needs. The design of product attributes appears able to enhance the sustainable development of products, through users' awareness of various environmental characteristics. This study thus proposes a unique method to understand product design structures and make cell phone design decisions that feature individualized designs. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.