eCommerce Sustainability: How to Achieve It

Javi Fondevila

As technology grows and becomes more advanced, the issue of sustainability, particularly eCommerce sustainability, is one of the more significant factors which is driving trends within the industry. Today, consumers are looking for a shopping experience which is quick, convenient and instantaneous, however, they also demand that companies are socially responsible and have a positive impact on the world.

Issues such as global warming, pollution of our oceans and the scarcity of resources are being constantly reported in the news and are always doing the rounds on social media. This has a direct impact on consumers and means that more of them are turned on to today’s biggest issues and they are willing to base buying decisions on this. In fact, it has been shown that consumers are willing to pay a premium for products produced by companies who can demonstrate a commitment to being environmentally friendly and socially responsible.

eCommerce is Rapidly Growing

In fact, it is the world’s fastest-growing market. In 2016 alone, the U.S. saw eCommerce sales of almost $100 billion and these numbers are only getting bigger with each passing month. With companies such as Shopify and third-party integrations making it easier than ever to go into business online, there’s no wonder that eCommerce is constantly growing.

Although this is great news for anybody who wants to go into the eCommerce industry with their own product, it means that these companies have to be increasingly careful when it comes to environmental considerations.

The resources and logistics needed to build a successful eCommerce company means that their carbon footprints can be high, however, there are many strategies which companies across the eCommerce industry can do to reduce their environmental impact.

eCommerce Sustainability: How to Make Your Store Environmentally Friendly

There are quite a few methods you can use to improve your eCommerce sustainability and be more environmentally friendly.

1. Choose the right hosting company and package

You can make a huge difference by using a web hosting company which is energy efficient and managed in a way which is sustainable. After all, web hosting requires a huge amount of energy to keep your website online 24/7, and websites which use lots of resource-intensive applications need higher processing power.

You can also make your website more efficient by using images and other elements in the right way. Whilst it is important to have high-quality images, for example, you can use a lower-resolution version of these pictures for search engine results pages.

2. Use efficient and sustainable logistics

If you’re selling physical products, then you need to ship them. Shipping is a very strategic consideration, however, if you are selling large products then shipping can be a huge challenge. When you are having to send large and cumbersome packages around the country and abroad, it is very easy to create inefficiencies without knowing about it.

Packaging is one area where inefficiencies arise when it comes to shopping. You should strive to make your packages as small as possible as not only does this reduce the amount of space it takes up throughout the shipping process, but it also reduces plastic and paper waste. Try to avoid using Styrofoam which cannot easily be recycled and does not degrade naturally.

3. Get feedback from your customers

Involving customers in your company’s drive to be sustainable and responsible doesn’t only help you improve your environmental impact, but it engages these customers at the highest level which can lead to customer loyalty and improved brand recognition. It is easy to become detached from what your consumers want, and involving them in your ethical initiatives is a great way to improve them.

Customers are also likely to have feedback about your logistics process, the packaging it arrives in and the product itself. Finding out what they think and what suggestions they have about how your company can do better is a great way to not only improve your eCommerce store’s environmental impact but satisfy your customers at the same time.


Consumers are growing increasingly aware of the environmental impacts which are shaping our world. As a result, consumers expect eCommerce stores, brands and other companies to be doing all they can to leave a positive mark on the world. eCommerce sustainability is a growing concern and brands that adopt a greener approach now will fare better as the world becomes more switched on to climate change.

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