Building sustainability into your ecommerce business

Philip Keezer
3 min readJan 27, 2022


There’s no doubt that protecting the environment is the top of the agenda in 2022 for businesses, governments and individuals around the world. Building sustainable economies is key to the future, and consumers are increasingly directing their spending power toward companies that can demonstrate they are doing business responsibly.

In fact some recent research suggests that more than 80% of consumers will actively seek products which they know are produced and packaged sustainably and 70% of consumers are willing to spend more on brands that apply sustainable principles. In fact, ‘ethical spending’ has surged by 23%

So, being conscious of sustainability isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s also good business.

As an eCommerce business, building sustainability into your business can increase lead generation, brand loyalty, and recognition. In this article, we’ll look at how eCommerce business owners can build a sustainable business that will resonate with today’s consumers.

A quiet road leading through an autumnal forest full of oranges and reds

Update brand identity or ethos

Your brand ethos needs to represent the culture, values and goals of your business — so it’s important to get it right. If sustainability is part of your business model, it’s important to demonstrate this through your brand. Doing so will ensure your brand resonates with sustainably minded consumers, while also creating brand awareness, and fostering
customer loyalty.

Be clear about what sustainability means to your business, and the ways in which you are pursuing sustainable business policies.

Building sustainability into your supply chain

Making sure your own business is sustainable is half the battle, but what about the other businesses in your network — the suppliers, manufacturers, shippers and so on?
Making sure your business ecosystem reflects your commitment to sustainability is also important. If your developing packaging yourself, then adopting eco-friendly packaging methods is another great way to signal your commitment to a sustainable economy. Consider biodegradable packaging materials and sourcing raw materials as locally as you can.

The more packages your business sends to customers, the more packaging needs to be disposed of upon delivery. This isn’t good for your business or for the planet. Plus, if consumers are unhappy with the way you pack your products, the chances of reordering are low.

Carbon neutral web hosting

You might be surprised to learn that the internet is responsible for nearly 4% of greenhouse gas emissions. Fossil fuels power the majority of web hosting servers. However, an increasing number of eco-friendly web hosts have committed themselves to sustainability in recent years. Perhaps your business can support one of these web-hosts by moving your online assets to them. After all, for any online retailer, online presence is a huge part of business, and signalling your sustainable credits by your choice of web-host is something that will again resonate with sustainably minded consumers.

With more and more consumers putting sustainability at the heart of their purchasing choices, and with growing awareness of the environmental impact of our economies, there has never been a better time to build sustainability into your ecommerce business.

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Philip Keezer

I’m Philip J. Keezer, president and founder of management consulting firm Grindstone Capital. Dedicated to hard work, learning, positivity and accountability.