In recent years, online shopping has skyrocketed in terms of popularity. The demand for products to be delivered straight to a consumer’s door has never been so high. But what does this mean for the environment when shipping requires an incredible amount of boxes, slips, pockets, and more? Generally speaking, it’s not good. It’s why consumers are becoming more and more aware of sustainable methods used in packaging when they choose places to shop. Not only are consumers more willing to pay for sustainable packaging, they are becoming increasingly interested in it.
What is Sustainable Packaging:
Sustainable packaging is self explanatory. It’s packaging that a company uses that is manufactured using sustainable practices. This can vary between many different factors such as size, materials, and design. For example, companies may opt for smaller cardboard boxes with cardboard shock absorption rather than using Styrofoam peanuts.
If your company is looking to make the move to sustainable packaging, you would ultimately be decreasing your carbon footprint and contributing to improving the environment. Consumers are also more likely to notice these changes and your business may benefit from this positive image.
How to make your packaging sustainable:
There are a number of things you can do to make your packaging sustainable. One of the most common practices is to ensure that you are not being wasteful when it comes to shipping your products. Consumers are often noticing companies who send out large cardboard boxes with tiny products inside of them and then lamenting at the wastefulness of it all. Your business can learn to optimize its packaging sizes and reducing excess materials. Smaller packages will result in less waste and can help in reducing shipping fees across the board.
Be sure to use recyclable materials in your packaging as well. Cardboard boxes are the go-to choice for a reason! Plastic shipping containers are often far more expensive and can cause your shipping rates to increase. They are also non-recyclable and will more often than not end up in a landfill after the package has been opened. You may also want to research sustainable filler materials to replace non-sustainable options. Shredded kraft paper can make for a fantastic alternative over packing peanuts. Be mindful that this may be a more expensive option, but if you manage to optimize your package sizes, you may not even have to use filler at all!
Inform The Customer:
To earn yourself some positive imagery, you may want to include extra symbols or instructions to let your customers know how they can recycle your packaging. You may also include information about how the packaging was created and what materials it uses. By passing this knowledge onto the customer, they will then take the initiative to recycle your packaging or use it how they see fit instead of simply throwing it away. This will also attract the attention of environmentally aware customers and thus earning you their business in the future. Lastly, this can be a creative method for your business to connect with your customers, making their experience more personal and interactive.
Review Your Shipping Process:
Your business should conduct scheduled audits to review your current shipping practices. Have a third party company like Watchdog Management Services complete this audit for you so you can identify where you’ve improved and what areas may need attention. By doing so, you can implement further improvements to your shipping and packaging to achieve your green goals.
To further connect with your customers, you may also ask for feedback in the form of customer surveys to give them a better sense of environmental responsibility. With the help of a cost management company like Watchdog Management Services, you may find that you will end up saving money in the long run by being able to identify sustainable improvements in your bottom line.