Consumers are taking notice of companies that provide sustainable solutions within their supply chain. Now more than ever, it’s important to show your clients that you are practicing eco-friendly shipping habits.

Here are five ways to make shipping eco-friendly, affordable, and easy.

Filling Material

We are all aware that styrofoam is bad for the environment. It’s cheap, easy to buy, and it’s what customers expect to find as the filling material inside of their package. However, you can purchase eco-friendly filling materials for the same prices as those packing peanuts.

There are a growing number of providers of eco-friendly filler materials. Replacing styrofoam in your supply chain can help both your brand and the environment.

Corrugated cardboard, mushrooms, biodegradable packing peanuts, and seaweed are just a few examples of sustainable fillers that you can use for your shipping options.

Shipping Provider

All shipping providers have a fleet. It’s how they use that fleet that makes a vast difference in providing sustainable shipping for your business. Using a third-party provider like PigeonShip that cares about the environment is the first step in making sure every part of your shipping process is as eco-friendly as possible.

PigeonShip technology sources “already going there” vehicles to maximize efficiency and minimize the PigeonShip footprint. They do all of this with the speed today’s consumers expect in their order delivery.

Package Size

There’s a viral meme about how Amazon will ship a watch in a box meant for a large television. While meant to be funny, it shows that consumers notice when the packaging for an item is too large and that they also see this as wasteful.

Making sure you have a large supply of differing sizes of materials can mean that you always have the right size for the item in question.

Customers may not laud your decision to ship an item in a box designed for its size, but there won’t be a meme about how you use packaging that’s way too large.

Return Plan

Having a detailed return plan will help your business be more eco-friendly. Sometimes it’s just the right call to ship an entirely new item to the customer without asking for the original item back. If you need the item back, ask the customer to send it in the original packaging if possible.

You could also offer a credit to consumers who will send the packaging back to you to be recycled or recycle the packaging themselves.

Create a hashtag and make recycling your packaging a fun game online for your customers. They get a credit and you get content to share as well as knowing you helped create sustainable shipping by enticing a third party to recycle on your behalf.

Supply Chain Partners

When negotiating with supply chain partners, make sustainability a focus of the conversation. Can they ship to you in bulk and in less packaging? If you have partners already, you could retroactively ask this of them and also explain to them why eco-friendly shipping is important. 

Maybe they can modify how they do things and bring more clients into their business as well by offering sustainable options for new clients to choose from.

The Paper Trail

You should avoid using bleached paper at any cost. If you can avoid using paper all together that’s a huge win. Send the receipt via email when possible and do not provide a packing list.

If instructions are needed and can’t be delivered electronically use recycled paper and minimize the number of pages needed to provide clear instructions for your customer.

Creating an eco-friendly shipping plan takes some effort but the rewards are plentiful. Contact PigeonShip today to learn how we can be a supply chain partner for your shipping needs.

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