Knowing where to start to become an eco-friendly business can be difficult. Here are a few areas you can examine.
Knowing where to start to become an eco-friendly business can be difficult. Here are a few areas you can examine first and start to steer in an eco-friendly direction as soon as possible.
Though recent world events have taken over the news cycle, climate change is still happening all around us. In the past few years, consumers have started becoming even more concerned with the eco-credentials of the brands they buy from. Doing your bit to help the environment isn’t just a responsibility that all business owners have, it can also be economically fruitful. Becoming an eco-friendly business may be morally and commercially advisable, but it can also be difficult to know where to start. Here are a few areas you can examine first and start to steer in an eco-friendly direction as soon as possible.
When it comes to running an eco-friendly business, the supply chain can be one of the hidden and most important fixes, particularly if you purchase from companies who are also outsourcing. Where do your products and materials actually come from? Do you know? If you are importing from across the world, the impact of air travel, and the potential human rights issues you may be unwittingly involved in, are massive considerations to solve before you can call yourself eco-friendly. Is it possible for you to source what you need closer to home? If so, altering your supply chain is a simple yet hugely effective step you can take.
It can feel like an impossible conundrum if your business is based around selling products that are fundamentally not eco-friendly. Perhaps they are made of plastic or another high-consequence material. Many business owners simply give up at this stage – but you don’t have to do this. It might take more time, but the rewards are huge if you can find a way to transition into eco-friendly alternatives to your current product ranges. For example, many toothbrush companies now sell bamboo toothbrushes instead of plastic options, and they are doing better business than ever.
It’s no good having an eco-friendly product if you are selling it in carbon-guzzling plastic packaging. Not only is this hypocritical, but the packaging is one of the first things customers see, and it can have a massive effect on your brand image. If you produce consumables, custom food packaging sets your product apart, and this can be a vital part of promoting yourself as an eco, ethical alternative to competitors’ produce. Finding eco-friendly packaging isn’t as hard as it sounds, and there are plenty of options out there for you to consider.
Finally, it’s worth considering what resources you are using in the rest of your business surrounding the making and distribution of your services or products. For example, how much paperwork do you use in your office, and is any of this unnecessary? Some files and contracts may be useful to keep physically, but other than that, can you go paper-free? Do you offer company cars as an incentive – and if so, could you start to change this culture, encouraging employees to cycle and offering bicycles instead (depending on the commutes involved, of course). All these little changes can really add up in business, so get thinking today about how you can move into the future.