In today’s environmentally conscious society, consumers are increasingly looking for businesses that are environmentally responsible. Small business owners can reduce their environmental impact, save costs, and demonstrate their commitment to sustainability without big investments or complicated strategies. But before you start to get busy doing… Does being more sustainable matter to you and/or your target audience? If it doesn’t matter today, will it matter in the future?
If you are answering yes to those questions, then here’s why sustainability is important to small business owners and long-term success:
- Reputation – Adopting sustainable practices can improve a company’s reputation and customer loyalty, which can lead to increased sales and positive brand recognition.
- Cost savings – Implementing sustainable practices such as reducing water and energy usage and implementing recycling programs can result in cost savings for the company.
- Compliance – As environmental regulations become increasingly strict, adopting sustainable practices can help small businesses comply with regulations and avoid legal penalties.
- Employee satisfaction – Many employees today value working for a socially responsible company that promotes sustainability and ethical practices.
- Innovation – Adopting sustainable practices can spur innovation and promote the development of new products and technologies.
When it comes to growing a small business, here’s how being more sustainable can help you:
- Attracting customers – We are living in an increasingly environmentally conscious society and in many cases, consumers are increasingly looking for businesses that are environmentally responsible. By promoting their sustainable practices, businesses can attract more customers and increase sales.
- Cost savings – Adopting sustainable practices can result in cost savings for the business. For example, reducing energy and water usage can lower utility bills, while using sustainable materials can reduce waste disposal costs.
- Improved reputation – Being environmentally responsible and sustainable can improve a business’s reputation and brand image. This can lead to a larger customer base and increased customer loyalty and trust.
- Innovation – Adopting sustainable practices can spur innovation and encourage the development of new products and technologies. This can provide a competitive advantage and contribute to business growth.
- Access to funding – Many investors and lenders today are looking to support businesses that are socially responsible and environmentally sustainable. Adopting sustainable practices can make a business more appealing to these funders, providing access to additional capital for growth.
Being a sustainable small business can be more than just reducing energy consumption, paper usage and waste – but that’s a great way to start. If you don’t want to sit and create a larger plan for your sustainability journey, then that’s fine. Start with the basics and the quick wins and then go from there…
Here are our top 10 sustainability quick wins:
- Reduce energy consumption by switching to renewable sources of energy and using energy-efficient appliances.
- Reduce waste by implementing recycling programs and reducing paper usage.
- Source products and materials from sustainable and ethical suppliers and order in bulk where possible.
- Encourage employees to adopt sustainable practices such as cycling or walking to work and reduce water usage.
- Use low-emission transport on journeys to work and where possible, while traveling during the day for work and combine trips to multiple clients or suppliers.
- Encourage video conferencing to reduce travel.
- Support the local community in projects or fundraising.
- Engage with customers and suppliers to promote sustainable practices and build a sustainable supply chain.
- Review your technology to ensure you are using it in the most efficient and productive way and if necessary, consider upgrades.
- Make sure you know your business numbers – this can help you plan effectively, retain employees, keep customers, and continue growing your small business.
Being more sustainable clearly has its benefits, and there is a growing interest in more sustainable small businesses. So, whilst your customers may not ask you outright about your sustainability plans, it doesn’t mean they won’t be tempted to move to a competitor because your competition is actively communicating what they are doing and why.
Your sustainability mission can be another benefit of choosing you and can really help potential customers buy into you, your business, and why you started in the first place.
To find out more about our sustainability mission please contact us here or give us a call on 01296 681341.
To understand how we can help you with long-term business growth speak to our experts at BAS Consultancy Services Ltd here.