April 22nd is Earth Day, a time to reflect on the environmental impact of our daily lives and make a positive change. This can be challenging, particularly for retailers and eCommerce businesses. You may worry that green practices are too costly or waste too much time, or wonder how to shift toward more sustainable products or business model. Fortunately, there are real practices you can put into place to decrease your business’s carbon footprint without sacrificing profit or spending a great deal of time. In fact, a few of these practices may even lead your business to recover money otherwise lost!
Offer More Sustainable Products
One important way to support sustainable business practices is to evaluate the products you sell and shift toward sustainable options wherever possible.
For some brands, this may mean switching manufacturing processes. It may involve using eco-friendly parts, shifting to renewable energy in your factories, or changing your packaging to reduce waste and incorporate recycled materials. While such a shift can be a major undertaking, now is the perfect time to explore the possibilities and make a plan for the future.
If your brand doesn’t manufacture its own products, the process will likely be a lot more simple. Contact your distributors to find out what green alternatives they offer to products you already sell. If they don’t have sustainable options available, do some research and find out what alternatives exist in the marketplace and where to source them responsibly.
While changing your product offerings may be a daunting task, there is good news here. Nearly 60% of consumers surveyed in 2020 said they would change their shopping habits to be more environmentally friendly. So be sure to share your new, greener product lines with the world — you’ll likely earn brand loyalty by doing so.
Aim for a Green Online Store
In eCommerce, it’s easy to overlook the environmental cost of doing business. However, web-based businesses are just as susceptible to pollution and waste as their brick-and-mortar counterparts.
The first piece of the puzzle to consider is your website itself. Yes, believe it or not, the internet has a carbon footprint, and it is massive. It’s estimated that the internet uses more energy and outputs more carbon than even air travel. To reduce your brand’s emissions, consider switching to a server run on renewable energy resources.
Next, consider your packaging and shipping options. Look for shipping products made from recycled materials and switch to biodegradable mailers and packing peanuts rather than plastic and styrofoam. Also, ensure your shipping containers are as close as possible to the size of your products, with minimal wasted space inside. This will allow your shipping provider to better allocate space in their delivery trucks and will reduce waste at the same time.
Participate in Recommerce and Join the Circular Economy
Finally, one of the most important ways to make your business more sustainable is to participate in the circular economy rather than allowing your products to be dumped into landfills.
In another age, it was an acceptable practice for companies to dump damaged, returned, or overstock goods. Today, we know better, and consumers expect retailers to do the right thing and keep products out of landfills as much as possible. But you don’t want to clog up your warehouses with products that aren’t selling or that can’t be sold as new. What’s a brand to do?
Fortunately, B-Stock has your back. Our recommerce solution means you can offload excess or damaged products into the secondary market rather than tossing them in a dumpster. In fact, last year we kept 5 million items out of landfills and gave them a new life through our online liquidation auctions.
How do we do this, you ask? Simple. Brands list excess inventory by the pallet or the truckload in our online auction marketplace. Vetted business buyers bid on these auctions, competing with one another to ensure you’re getting the best possible price, or recovery, for your liquidation inventory. Then, instead of your items going into a landfill, they’re given new life in the secondary market. These buyers resell the inventory to their customers on platforms like Amazon, eBay, and Poshmark. Even broken or damaged items can be used for parts or repaired and resold.
So the next time you need to clear out some space in your warehouse, go green and liquidate with B-Stock. We’re the sustainable solution to returned, damaged, overstock, or otherwise dead inventory.
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