Environmentally friendly retail businesses for London entrepreneurs

It used to be that the focus was solely on big business to lead the way to being greener, but not anymore. Now businesses of every type and size are coming on board to make real efforts to be more environmentally friendly in a whole range of ways – and it’s important for many consumers to know that the places where they shop are doing this.

When you look at it, being more environmentally aware is a good idea in so many ways. The first is obviously that it is good for the environment and the second is that it cuts wastage -and therefore can increase profits too.

Best of all, much of it can be achieved with a relatively small investment of time and effort, and even when it does cost money to instigate changes, the savings mean they may even pay for themselves.

What practical steps can you take to become a leaner, greener business? The energy you use is a logical place to start – it represents a sizeable portion of the overheads as well as using up valuable fossil fuels. Using low energy lighting is a great first step, achievable by turning down the heating by just a few degrees. Also, electrical equipment is using power even when it’s on standby so when it’s not needed, turn it off. You might even consider switching to a green energy provider who could give you the peace of mind that a proportion of your power is coming from renewable sources.

Recycling is another key way that a business can lend a helping hand, whether it’s ensuring that the boxes that stock arrives in aren’t simply binned or by having dedicated receptacles for staff to put their rubbish into which can then be sorted in to paper, plastics and glass.

While these are relatively cheap measures to take there are a number of others that may be more expensive but whose benefits will also be greater. For example, there may be an opportunity to insulate your business premises more effectively and there may even be grants available to help you do this. Depending on the sort of building you’re in you could even look into having solar panels fitted which are estimated to cut your electricity bills by up to 50%. Obviously, these would take a number of years to recoup the initial outlay but could well be worth it in the long run.

You could also look at the equipment you’re using at the moment to see if there are any more energy-efficient versions available. But if you do decide to upgrade it’s important to make sure that you have the right shop insurance to make sure all your new equipment is properly covered.

You’ll be able to find far more detailed information online as well as tips on how to qualify for some quite generous grants to help pay for it.

Of course, becoming totally green isn’t something that you can achieve overnight. However, as they say, ‘every little helps’ so anything you can do is bound to make a difference – to the environment, your business and even to your customers.

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