Building an eco-friendly business: Why do it? What are the benefits?
Consumers are becoming more environmentally conscious, for sure, but businesses still have an outsized impact on the environment, in large part because of the sizes of their operations. Which means that even seemingly insignificant decisions can go a long way! The positive, rewarding feeling of having made a contribution to protect the environment aside, the benefits of becoming a more eco-friendly business are tangible as well.
Essentially, it’s becoming more and more clear that going green just makes business sense.
According to research by Nielsen, an incredible 73% of Millennials are willing to pay more if it means the company is more sustainable. That’s a higher proportion than if you’re looking at the average consumer (at 66%), and with Gen Zers being possibly even more socially and eco-conscious with their purchasing decisions, it’s clear that sustainability is a key consideration for your customers (and potential customers).
In fact, that’s exactly what CGS found in their 2019 Retail and Sustainability Survey: 68% of Gen Z shoppers (who are all grown up) have put their money where their mouths are—and made an eco-friendly purchase within that year.
3 ways to communicate your business’ sustainability initiatives
1. Feature them on your website.
Today, a business’ website is pretty much like a welcome mat for your customers who are looking for you online. (And potential customers!). And if your business is doing good in the world and making environmentally friendly choices, your website is the perfect place to highlight it.
The “About Us” page tends to be a good go-to area of your website to talk about your mission and commitments as a company. For example, companies like Target and IKEA have entire pages on their websites devoted to telling people about their sustainable energy projects, like solar power and wind energy.
Not only are these projects impressive in their own right, they’ve also gotten those companies a considerable amount of press. If you were ever wondering if switching to solar energy or making greener choices as a business would be worth it, it’s becoming more and more clear that it is!)
2. Create a WePlant Badge.
Making environmentally friendly choices as a company and writing about it in your About Us page is one thing—but how can you communicate that to your audience in other ways that are more visual and stand out more?
With the WePlant Badge, not only do you have a beautiful graphic that you can place on your website (or print out to place in your physical store or office), you’re also taking part in concrete steps to improve the world:
It’s a simple and cool way for your customers to see the details of your company’s commitment to the environment:
Here’s an example of how it works:
Let’s say your business, Acme Solutions, plants a hundred trees through getting the WePlant Badge. That’s not where your impact ends! By inviting your customers, prospects, partners, and other folks you work with to plant with you, you can grow your forest even more quickly!
In fact, that’s exactly what Salesforce has done—see how big of an impact they’ve made—planting over 35,000 trees and absorbing almost 900 tons of carbon dioxide every year in the process!
3. Highlight eco-friendly initiatives on social media.
Beyond your website, the other most valuable communication channel for your business is probably social media.
And while most companies focus on promoting their own products and sharing the latest memes and GIFs on social media, it’s sometimes overlooked as an effective brand-building tool.
Companies like Allbirds and Veja Shoes have built their entire brands around attracting the ever-growing eco-conscious consumer group, and it’s paying off in spades.
A quick skim through their Instagram and Twitter channels show that companies like these are leveraging the power of Retweets, Likes, and Shares to build environmentally friendly brands that are, frankly, awesome alternatives for people who are becoming more aware of the environmental impact of their buying decisions.
That’s a wrap!
ere you have it. Three simple ways to begin transforming your business for the better—while building customer loyalty and boosting your bottom line too.
Now that’s a win-win-win situation.