‘Green commerce’ isn’t a trendy phrase anymore. Customers want businesses to make meaningful efforts to develop more sustainable business practices. Nearly 70% of customers have said that sustainability is an important consideration when choosing a product or service.
Many organizations especially those in the ecommerce business now also consider going green. This is where eco-friendly shipping comes into play. The way you pack and ship your things has a huge influence on the environment and if you can limit your impact, you may discover that your consumers become more loyal.
This article will outline some best practices to follow when considering a sustainable shipping method for your products.
What Does Eco-Friendly Shipping Mean?
Eco-friendly shipping uses biodegradable materials that can easily be reused, recycle, and decompose quickly. It can also apply in consolidating transactions into a single delivery, utilizing low-carbon shipping techniques, and other strategies of reducing the bad environmental effects.
1. Choose An Environmentally-Friendly Shipping Provider
Every shipping company has a fleet. It’s the way they manage their fleet that makes a significant difference in offering sustainable shipping for your business. Using a sustainable freight forwarding company carrier is the first step towards ensuring that every aspect of your shipping procedure is as environmentally friendly as possible.
Before hiring a shipping partner, consider questions such as, ‘Is the carrier using sustainable methods and eco-friendly transportation solutions?’ Is the carrier’s environmental commitment measurable?’ The supply chain image of a carrier that values sustainability and environmental awareness might help you increase your sales. As mentioned, some customers value the environment and prefer to do business with firms that share their values.
2. Choose Green Packaging
Orders must be packaged properly to avoid shipping damages. The packaging you choose can contribute significantly to retail packaging waste. Choose eco-friendly packaging and shipping materials like compostable mailer bags and biodegradable packing to reduce your carbon footprint.
When shipping your products, utilize eco-friendly materials like boxes, mailers, and other supplies to reduce the environmental impact. Eco-friendly packaging options vary depending on your e-commerce business’s needs. Among these are:
- Cornstarch packaging
- Compostable mailers
- Air pillows
- Recycled craft paper
- Corrugated cardboard
- Packaging peanuts
- Modified shipping containers
3. Use Right-Sized Packaging
Reducing packing wastage is an easy technique to improve shipping efficiency. Studies suggest that the average package wastes 40% of its space. This wasted space has numerous negative environmental effects. Larger-than-needed packaging results in waste packing resources. As a result, larger packages take up more trailer space, increasing carbon emissions and fuel usage.
With a corrugated box-making machine, you can create a box to fit the goods you’re shipping in real-time. Using the right size of packaging reduces carbon footprint, frees up important warehouse space, prevents damage while in transit, and lowers shipping costs.
Significantly, when it comes to fillers, Styrofoam is what’s commonly used. However, Styrofoam harms the environment and isn’t eco-friendly. On the other hand, a great alternative as filler is biodegradable packing peanuts, they’re made from natural sources, such as wheat and cornstarch.
The number of eco-friendly filler material suppliers are increasing. It benefits your image and the environment by replacing Styrofoam.
4. Create A Return Strategy
As businesses ship more goods due to online sales, they are also likely to get more returns. It’s essential to apply a return strategy that considers the environment as well as costs.
Returning goods may be environmentally damaging due to the fuel spent and pollution caused. However, destroying defective products instead of returning them has a different environmental consequence.
A better solution for this issue is for you to just consider sending a new product without asking for the old one back. This eliminates the hassles of processing returns and reduces the shipping pollution.
5. Insulate The Warehouse
The fact that warehouse walls are generally made of thin metal components with little insulation is one of the major energy wastes in the storage process. In winter, thermal energy is wasted due to inefficient warehouse heating. To avoid having to install too many Air-conditioning (AC) units in the warehouse, it’s advisable to invest in the thinnest layer of insulation. Also, a proper ventilation system with massive ceiling fans that spread warm and fresh air equally throughout the warehouses helps cut heating costs.
6. Ship In Bulk
Individual packages are sometimes required. But try to ship in bulk. Shipping a high number of boxes reduces unused freight space and saves on fuel utilization. For instance, if a consumer orders many items, ship them in one container to save on packaging.
Every effort counts in sustainability. Making your business more sustainable is a wise contribution to the future of your brand and the wellness of the environment. Keep in mind the suggestions listed above to maintain your thriving business while still caring for our environment.