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5 Steps an eCommerce Business Can Take Toward Sustainable Shipping

Sustainable shipping has become more relevant than ever. Both businesses and their clients have realized how important it is to reduce our carbon footprint, inspiring one another to strive for more eco-friendly approaches.

An eCommerce business isn’t in control of all order transportation processes. But it can make decisions relevant to the whole shipping chain. And if you’re also ready to step toward sustainable shipping, here are 5 ways how you can implement these changes.

Invest in sustainable packaging

The best way to start your quest toward greener shipping is to choose sustainable packaging. It doesn’t matter whether you’re shipping to Ukraine, France, Canada, or within the USA; there are plenty of eco-friendly options that are suitable for both domestic and international package shipping.

Packaging is crucial for safe order delivery. But it also contributes to the waste left after the shipping process has been completed. To reduce the impact it has on the environment, avoid plastic as much as possible. Instead, focus on reusable packaging. Look for either recyclable or compostable alternatives, such as paper-based products.

Don’t forget that there are two types of packaging – external and internal. Don’t limit yourself to using recyclable cardboard boxes only. You can go further and invest in sustainable cushioning materials. Opt for biodegradable packaging peanuts or corrugated bubble wrap.

Optimize package size

Optimization means doing more with fewer resources. And when it comes to sustainable shipping, one way to achieve that is to reduce package size. The more space a parcel occupies inside a vehicle, and the fewer packages can be transported at a time. And more round-ups need to be taken to complete all the deliveries, which results in higher carbon emissions.

To offer eco-friendly shipping to your customers, pack your orders as efficiently as possible. Don’t apply one packaging size if you’re selling goods of various dimensions to avoid using too large boxes. They don’t provide good protection for items as they leave too much void inside and require more cushioning materials.

All of this adds up not only to the waste left after package delivery but also to the shipping expenses. If you consult a shipping rates calculator, you can see that it’s cheaper to send parcels of smaller dimensions. So it’s a double win.

Consolidate orders

Package size is important. But it’s not the only aspect you can focus on. Another great way to optimize your processes is to ship in bulk. And it also comes with two advantages – one for the environment and the other for the customers.

By consolidating orders, you can reduce the round trips delivery vehicles make to fulfill them. And, in return, you’ll contribute to greener shipping. You’ll also need less amount of packaging materials which minimizes the waste and lessens the cost for your clients.

Partner with carriers who promote eco-friendly shipping

Finding a reliable shipping company is crucial for any eCommerce business. It’s a factor that ensures smooth order delivery and has a big impact on customer satisfaction. It’s important to pay extra attention when selecting a business partner. And when aiming for sustainable shipping, you have to be even more prudent.

Not all carriers apply eco-friendly practices in their shipping processes. So naturally, they aren’t the best choices for eCommerce businesses that wish to adopt a greener approach. But you can choose from shipping companies that have already implemented eco-friendly changes.

Some of them even offer various eco-friendly programs, which can be truly beneficial. You’ll get a partner that supports and guides you along the way.

Encourage your clients to contribute

It’s great to contribute to sustainability yourself. But that’s not all. The next thing you can do is raise awareness. It’s not always enough to make sure that the package delivery is eco-friendly on your end. You can also educate your clients on how they can contribute to the cause.

Encourage your customers to reuse packaging left from their orders. Inform them of the right way to dispose of both recyclable and compostable materials. You can do that by providing information on your website or printing brief instructions on packaging boxes. Customers will appreciate the gesture showing that you care.

The road to sustainable shipping may seem long and hard to take. But it’s not an impossible goal to achieve if you take one step at a time.