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Sustainability Shopping

Posted February 15, 2021

Recycled box, string and notebook; Sustainability Shopping

Did you know that a growing number of customers are willing to spend more on a product if the company’s ethics-based branding aligns with their own values? This is also true for companies that practice sustainability to help protect our environment and create a brighter, healthier future for all.

From using recycled materials in production to creating durable products with improved longevity, many brands are changing the way they do business to cut waste and help customers feel like they, too, are making a difference—just by buying from a particular store.

But how can your brand demonstrate corporate responsibility and improve sustainable practices? 

At Rosedale, many of the incredible retailers that make up its thriving shopping center have already implemented eco-friendly practices to help protect the planet, as well as the people and animals living on it. 

Six for Good, a collective boutique featuring six friends from six brands, is a great example of small business owners with a mission to do good for others. Each brand represents a specific charity, so when they sell a product, such as a piece of unique jewelry, travel gear or other hand-made accessories, a portion of the proceeds go to that brand’s charity. 

Northern Glasses, a brand featured among many other small businesses at Rose & Loon—a retail store in Rosedale that showcases and sells hand-made crafts and goods from a diverse collective of local artisans—manufacturers and sells custom glassware. But they do much more than that. For every product they sell, 7% of that purchase goes straight to organizations working to bring cleaner water to every person on the planet. And since April 2020, the company reports that they have already raised over $12K to help these organizations and their mission. 

“These are just a few examples of brands at Rosedale that are truly making a difference through the products they sell and the charities they support,” said Lisa Crain, General Manager at Rosedale Center. “Customers know that when they shop at Rosedale Center, they’re not only helping small businesses thrive; they’re also doing their part to make a positive impact on the planet.”

3 Effective Strategies for Creating an Eco-Friendly Brand

Looking for ways to implement eco-friendly practices inside your own retail store? Here are a few ideas to help you get started! 

Switch to Recycled Materials

Still using plastic bags and packaging? This is the first place you can start making a difference and showing your customers that you’re committed to practicing sustainability. 

You might decide to swap out your current packaging options with compostable bags or other eco-friendly options to help reduce your carbon footprint. You can also offer a special discount to customers who use their own recycled bags, as a way to reward them for helping you continue your mission. 

Go Digital with Receipts

If you’re still handing out paper receipts to customers, you might decide to switch to a digital system that sends e-receipts instead. Or you can also give customers the option to do this themselves. 

Many brands, for instance, allow customers to choose between a printed receipt, e-receipt, or none at all. Given the choice, it’s more likely your customers would prefer to have an e-receipt, which means you waste less paper, and your shoppers feel good about shopping at your store, from beginning to end. 

Incorporate Sustainability into Your Brand’s Culture

Even if you sell sustainable products, if customers see your employees being wasteful or going against your brand’s mission then you might look less credible. If you’re serious about changing your operations to improve sustainability and reduce waste, you need to decide how this new approach aligns with your brand and your brand’s culture. 

What type of attitudes and zero-waste practices do you believe are important for your team to have? If you’re passionate about saving the environment then your employees should be, too, and your customers will be able to tell the difference.

Remember, it’s better to start small, and see where you can make immediate changes to your current operations without a complete overhaul. Also, be sure that the changes you are making are communicated to your customers. They’ll appreciate that they’re supporting a brand that cares about the environment and is doing its part to make the world a better, safer place.

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