One of the least green parts of your business is your shipping. It’s sometimes hard to see, as it’s not exactly a smokestack blasting chemicals into the air in your backyard. Regardless, the damage is there, and it’s almost constant.
But it doesn’t have to be that way! Going green (or at least making strides in that direction) with your shipping doesn’t involve any big, giant steps. Like the damage done, the changes are sometimes hard to see, but they make a big impact in the long run.
Often with damage to the Earth it’s not bulldozers razing the Amazon that makes the most impact, it’s the billions of people who do little things and don’t try to change them. The same can be said for your (and most everyone else’s) shipping programs.
While one box shipped across the country might not be a big deal, it all adds up over time. Let’s say you’re packaging up your latest jewelry creation you sold on Etsy. The design is a little unorthodox so you buy boxes that are funny shaped and a little on the big side to accommodate it.
Because of this, you’re already using extra packaging material to secure everything. You’re already in the hole as it is, but we’ll keep going. Your extra large/weird package has to fit onto a truck somewhere, so they cram it in the best they can. However, the weird shape creates a space where no other packages can go, which means they have to make a second trip that day. That’s double the fuel!
Your package arrives to its destination, but the next day you get an irate email from the customer. Seems your packaging idea didn’t work and the product exploded all over the box. No matter, you say, I’ll send another one. Now you’ve literally doubled the resources it took to get that one product to one customer.
Fixing the Little Things
Just like the eco impact shipping makes, fixing it to be eco-friendly is just a series of little things. You usually don’t have to make some gigantic overhaul of your entire system – just look at what’s not working and amend it.
For instance, you may think the size and shape of your box was the problem, and it sort of is. But at the root of it, it’s actually the shape of your product. Without the funny shape there would be no need for the funny box.
Is there way to amend the product in order to eliminate the weird package? If so, this would cut out several things – the need for the weird box, the extra packaging, and the mail truck having to try to fit a bizarre package in with square boxes.
Plus, when’s the last time you looked at your packaging safety? That extra fuel could’ve been saved if everything had been safely secured. A broken item could even be worse if the customer has to ship it back – that’s triple the cost to ship one item!
Now imagine this happening every day all around the world and you start to get the idea. If every business made little strides like these it would add up to one big change. Make your impact today!