There has been a huge shift towards sustainable businesses practices recently with people choosing to spend their money to support greener businesses. A 2021 global sustainability study found that:
• 63% of consumers in the last five years have shifted their spending toward being more sustainable (especially the younger demographic)
• 50% of consumers rank sustainability as a top 5 value driver.
• 34% of consumers are willing to pay more for sustainability, with a higher share of Millennials and Gen Z (those 40 and under) prepared to pay more.
The study noted that sustainability is become an expectation rather than the exception. However, consumers are becoming aware of greenwashing where companies spend more time and money on marketing itself as environmentally friendly than on actually minimizing its environmental impact so it’s important to actually make environmentally friendly choices, rather than merely being perceived as doing so. This might require your business to invest in new systems, packaging or products in the long term. In the short-term, here are 5 quick ways to help you become more sustainable.
1. Reduce your plastic waste
Is your business still buying single-use plastics? Whether it’s pallet wrap, courier bags, disposable cups or those coffee pods, there’s a quick and easy sustainable swap that you can make right now.
2. Recycle your old electronics
Old printers, phones and laptops can often be found lying around the office – along with a huge tangle of cables. Tidy up your space and help the environment by finding your local e-cycling centre and making the best of your outdated electronics.
3. Offset your carbon footprint
You can use an online calculator to estimate your business’s carbon emissions, then buy carbon credits to the same value to offset your emissions.
4. Use less paper
Embrace digital technology to cut your use of paper; switch to an electronic signing service so you no longer need to print and scan contracts or financial documents. If you must print something out, use both sides of the paper for internal documents. Buy recycled paper and recycle the paper waste your business creates.
5. Choose sustainable client gifts
Instead of sending hampers, consider a charitable donation – you could let the client choose from a list to get them engaged. Or send a potted plant, adopt an endangered animal, or pick an eco-friendly gift basket.