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5 Simple Ways Your SMB Can Go Green (and Save Green)

April 18, 2022

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“Going green” and “being sustainable” have become popular catch phrases in the last few years. Especially when it comes to how companies do business.

Recently, Starbucks made headlines when they announced their plans to phase out disposable cups. By 2025, the coffee-and-frap titan plans to have customers bring in their own mugs or use one of Starbucks’s own reusable versions. The action is part of their multi-year sustainability commitment plan.

Seeing large companies like Starbucks commit to sustainability may have inspired you to make your own business greener. And with Earth Day right around the corner, we want to give you two big reasons to make that leap: to make green and to save green.

As people both inside and outside your company hear about your green initiatives, your reputation will get a nice positive bump. Consumers will see that you care, and that makes them more likely to buy from your business. In fact, 70% of millennials said they would be willing to pay more for products and services from eco-friendly businesses.

Plus, 78% of Americans have bought sustainable products over non-sustainable ones. By practicing sustainability, you’ll attract new eco-friendly customers and strengthen loyalty among your current ones.

Your business will also save money in the long run. As you reduce the energy consumption of your business, you’ll lower your energy bills. There are also tax credits involved in investing in green initiatives. You can also get EPA grants and qualify for rebates (you can find resources on how to do that here). In California, you can get a rebate of up to $500 for installing energy-efficient refrigerators or air conditioners.

Not sure where to start? Here are some great ways for small businesses to start going green:

Reduce your energy consumption

Making small changes in your office to reduce energy use is a great place to start. Just switching to LED light bulbs alone can save you up to $1,000 a year.

By reducing the energy your business is using, you're lowering your energy bill costs. The longer you practice reducing your energy, the more you’ll save.

You can also talk to your team about the importance of conserving energy. Create reminders for them to implement simple habits, like setting up timers for their electronic devices to go to sleep after a period of inactivity.

Try to use natural light to your advantage so that you don’t have to have too many light sources on. And if you do have to use the lights, invest in light timers so all them shut off at the end of the day.

Make your kitchen eco-friendly

You can also avoid buying single-use straws — it's a small, but simple and effective move. Get rid of disposable utensils and plates that just add to waste. Instead, stock your kitchen with regular plates and cutlery. You’ll save money by eliminating the need to restock kitchen supplies.

Also, it’s time to get rid of those single-use coffee pods (yes, we know that one hurts) — it's the most wasteful way to make coffee. Instead, opt for a regular coffee maker and have someone brew plenty of coffee in the kitchen for everyone to use. Or, if you really want to go the extra mile, invest in several French presses and electric kettles. They’re easy to use and much more eco-friendly.

When buying snacks for the business buy in bulk. Buying individually packaged snacks is more expensive in the long run and will only add more waste.

Most importantly, make sure you have a recycle bin. Every piece of plastic or aluminum that doesn't end up in a landfill is a small win that adds up big.

Offer eco-friendly transportation incentives

Providing eco-friendly benefits is a good way to help retain and attract employees. In fact, 90% of employees who work at companies with a strong sense of purpose say they’re more inspired, motivated, and loyal.

Promote public transportation or carpooling. If you can, try investing in public transit passes for your employees. Have on-site bike storage available for those who commute that way. Or organize a carpool program. Determine which employees live in the same area or come in at a similar time and see if they would be interested in having just one person drive the group. 

Offer work from home

A great way to cut down on transportation's impact on the environment is to not commute at all! Remote work has been a standard practice since the pandemic, so if your business allows it, consider making the change permanent. Even having a hybrid plan, where you only work from the office a few days out of the week, can have some great benefits.

Plus, when your entire team works from home, you reduce the energy you would be using to keep the office up and running, which will save you even more money.

Switch to the cloud

Whether you work from home or in the office, consider migrating your data to the cloud.

Recently, public data centers (AKA, buildings dedicated to housing computer and storage systems) have been built much closer to the facilities that use them so that less electrical energy is needed to send that data. They’re also built to scale and increase energy-efficiency.

Plus, because these data centers are public, they’re easy to use with common applications like Google Suite or Microsoft 365. Meaning, they’re used often and won’t just sit there wasting energy to simply hold data until needed.

In fact, they’re so energy efficient that switching your business software to the cloud could lower the energy consumption of your business by 87%.

These are just a few ways you can get your business on the path of sustainable practices. Start small — even implementing just one of these tips will help your business go green to save green.

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Article

5 Simple Ways Your SMB Can Go Green (and Save Green)

April 18, 2022

Jump to a section
Share it!
Sign up for our newsletter
You're all signed up! Look out for the next edition of The Manual Weekly coming Wednesday am!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

“Going green” and “being sustainable” have become popular catch phrases in the last few years. Especially when it comes to how companies do business.

Recently, Starbucks made headlines when they announced their plans to phase out disposable cups. By 2025, the coffee-and-frap titan plans to have customers bring in their own mugs or use one of Starbucks’s own reusable versions. The action is part of their multi-year sustainability commitment plan.

Seeing large companies like Starbucks commit to sustainability may have inspired you to make your own business greener. And with Earth Day right around the corner, we want to give you two big reasons to make that leap: to make green and to save green.

As people both inside and outside your company hear about your green initiatives, your reputation will get a nice positive bump. Consumers will see that you care, and that makes them more likely to buy from your business. In fact, 70% of millennials said they would be willing to pay more for products and services from eco-friendly businesses.

Plus, 78% of Americans have bought sustainable products over non-sustainable ones. By practicing sustainability, you’ll attract new eco-friendly customers and strengthen loyalty among your current ones.

Your business will also save money in the long run. As you reduce the energy consumption of your business, you’ll lower your energy bills. There are also tax credits involved in investing in green initiatives. You can also get EPA grants and qualify for rebates (you can find resources on how to do that here). In California, you can get a rebate of up to $500 for installing energy-efficient refrigerators or air conditioners.

Not sure where to start? Here are some great ways for small businesses to start going green:

Reduce your energy consumption

Making small changes in your office to reduce energy use is a great place to start. Just switching to LED light bulbs alone can save you up to $1,000 a year.

By reducing the energy your business is using, you're lowering your energy bill costs. The longer you practice reducing your energy, the more you’ll save.

You can also talk to your team about the importance of conserving energy. Create reminders for them to implement simple habits, like setting up timers for their electronic devices to go to sleep after a period of inactivity.

Try to use natural light to your advantage so that you don’t have to have too many light sources on. And if you do have to use the lights, invest in light timers so all them shut off at the end of the day.

Make your kitchen eco-friendly

You can also avoid buying single-use straws — it's a small, but simple and effective move. Get rid of disposable utensils and plates that just add to waste. Instead, stock your kitchen with regular plates and cutlery. You’ll save money by eliminating the need to restock kitchen supplies.

Also, it’s time to get rid of those single-use coffee pods (yes, we know that one hurts) — it's the most wasteful way to make coffee. Instead, opt for a regular coffee maker and have someone brew plenty of coffee in the kitchen for everyone to use. Or, if you really want to go the extra mile, invest in several French presses and electric kettles. They’re easy to use and much more eco-friendly.

When buying snacks for the business buy in bulk. Buying individually packaged snacks is more expensive in the long run and will only add more waste.

Most importantly, make sure you have a recycle bin. Every piece of plastic or aluminum that doesn't end up in a landfill is a small win that adds up big.

Offer eco-friendly transportation incentives

Providing eco-friendly benefits is a good way to help retain and attract employees. In fact, 90% of employees who work at companies with a strong sense of purpose say they’re more inspired, motivated, and loyal.

Promote public transportation or carpooling. If you can, try investing in public transit passes for your employees. Have on-site bike storage available for those who commute that way. Or organize a carpool program. Determine which employees live in the same area or come in at a similar time and see if they would be interested in having just one person drive the group. 

Offer work from home

A great way to cut down on transportation's impact on the environment is to not commute at all! Remote work has been a standard practice since the pandemic, so if your business allows it, consider making the change permanent. Even having a hybrid plan, where you only work from the office a few days out of the week, can have some great benefits.

Plus, when your entire team works from home, you reduce the energy you would be using to keep the office up and running, which will save you even more money.

Switch to the cloud

Whether you work from home or in the office, consider migrating your data to the cloud.

Recently, public data centers (AKA, buildings dedicated to housing computer and storage systems) have been built much closer to the facilities that use them so that less electrical energy is needed to send that data. They’re also built to scale and increase energy-efficiency.

Plus, because these data centers are public, they’re easy to use with common applications like Google Suite or Microsoft 365. Meaning, they’re used often and won’t just sit there wasting energy to simply hold data until needed.

In fact, they’re so energy efficient that switching your business software to the cloud could lower the energy consumption of your business by 87%.

These are just a few ways you can get your business on the path of sustainable practices. Start small — even implementing just one of these tips will help your business go green to save green.

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5 Simple Ways Your SMB Can Go Green (and Save Green)

April 18, 2022

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