10 Best Eco-Friendly Business Ideas for Online Entrepreneurs
Today, we’ll talk about business ideas that will scale up even if all you do is online selling. The US Census Bureau reported a record 5.4 million applications to launch new businesses in 2021, and at the same time, sustainability in business has never been more crucial.
The number of new B Corp Certification applications increased by 16 percent in 2021 compared to 2020, demonstrating the concerted effort many organizations are putting forth to achieve sustainability. Additionally, the objective of net zero for business was a top priority at the COP26 summit last year.
As a result, we’ve come up with 10 company concepts for online entrepreneurs who want to launch a long-term enterprise. Discover 10 fascinating sustainable business ideas by reading on!
Why Eco-Friendly Business Matters
First and foremost, your customers care about sustainability. There has been a shift in consumer ideals, with more people looking for products that are ecologically friendly and sustainable. Sustainability will still be a top concern for consumers in 2021, according to a Deloitte survey, with 32% of respondents saying they are “very active” in changing their lifestyles.
Furthermore, a significant portion of consumers has ceased purchasing particular goods because of moral or environmental considerations, indicating that this is a factor that more and more people are taking into account when making purchases.
Simply said, having a sustainable business will lead to more effective business practices and enhance your company’s reputation with clients, potential investors, and job candidates. Here are some business concepts:
10 Eco-Friendly Business Comcept
Upcycle, Refurbish, or Repair
To implement this concept, existing products are taken and upcycled, renovated, or repaired to make them eligible for resale.
You can search your neighborhood charity shops and flea markets as well as websites like eBay, Depop, Facebook Marketplace, and Freecycle to find suitable things. There are countless possible items, including apparel, furniture, and electronic equipment.
Because the profit margin comes from being able to significantly improve the products so that you can sell them for more than you got them for, you need to have a creative eye and be hands-on with this work.
Be sure to browse similar products online to see what pricing others have listed them for. Look for objects that you can modify, fix, or personalize while keeping in mind the quality, materials, and age of the items in question.
Sell Reusable Products
Plastic bags and silverware are quickly becoming out of style. As a result, you could concentrate your business on selling products that encourage reuse rather than their disposable competitors, such as glass containers for food and beverages, durable shopping bags, and washable face masks.
In order to encourage zero waste, one firm that does this is Green Dodo, which manufactures reusable bamboo makeup wipes. It’s crucial to consider a certain niche for your products while sourcing them. This makes finding things and marketing yourself in a cutthroat industry easier.
Sell Second-Hand Items
You might want to think about selling used items online if you have a lot of stuff lying around your house that you never use. This might be a purchase from somewhere else or something you own.
Common examples include:
- Records on vinyl
To begin started, consider your interests, the products you now own or could readily source, your intended market, your marketing strategy, and your target market.
Either excellent branding or a USP is necessary for standing out (or both). Don’t just offer random items; organize them well, make them compelling, and give your store a narrative.
A retailer of pre-owned clothing in the vintage style is ToxicVintageClothing in the UK. The website for this brand, which also sells items on Etsy, describes the origin story of the name and brand, giving it a more personal feel.
Sell Sustainable Fashion
It is well known that fast fashion has terrible effects. 14 million tons of clothing are thrown away by Americans each year, and in 2018, 17 million tons of textile waste were dumped in landfills in the US alone.
Therefore, opening a sustainable fashion store can be a fantastic choice for you if you have an interest in fashion. Again, picking a specific specialty is better. Consider whether you’ll specialize in selling high-end or low-end goods and whether you’ll sell clothing for men, women, or people of all genders. Since there can be intense rivalry, branding your store is essential.
So tell me, how can I make my clothing company sustainable?
- Selling used clothing
- Connect with artisans who utilize recycled materials.
- Inquire with the supplier about their procedure to see whether there is a closed loop to prevent water waste.
- Where does the energy come from to manufacture and ship goods?
- What actions have both of you and them made to cut emissions?
The ethical clothing retailer Thought Clothing is an illustration of a sustainable fashion retailer. Thought Clothing utilizes natural materials, seeks to continuously enhance accreditation, and collaborates with companies operating sustainably to expand its closed loop opportunities.
Build a Sustainable App
Starting an app might be a terrific business idea if you have coding or technical expertise.
The most challenging aspect of developing an app is coming up with a compelling idea and marketing it to the correct audiences so that it may gain more users.
Although there are many various ways to make money using applications, the top three are as follows:
- Publicity Fees for the App
- In-App purchases
- App Fee
Examples include iHuerting, which enables you to create an urban garden from scratch, and Bikemap, an app that allows you to download details on trails and roads ideal for cycling in more than 80 nations.
It is anticipated that the market for environmental consulting services would increase from $56.39 billion in 2021 to $63.03 billion in 2022. If you have extensive wisdom and experience in a certain field, why not share it with businesses and/or customers? The knowledge-sharing economy is expanding.
You can offer consulting services tailored to the business or person you work with or build online courses through platforms like Udemy.
You may assist businesses in developing sustainability plans on the B2B side. Audits of their website, marketing, energy use, and garbage production could also be conducted.
If you’re giving consumers advice, this may be anything from how to reduce food waste to how to enhance home insulation.
Source and Sell The Most Sustainable Options
In today’s globalized and highly linked world, sourcing things from distant places has never been simpler. Product sourcing is the practice of looking for suitable products from a manufacturer or wholesaler to sell for your company.
The steps in the product sourcing process are:
- Choosing what you want to market – this is related to determining your niche or USP.
- examining environmentally friendly choices for your products. Your clients will want to know precisely why and how your items are sustainable, so you’ll want to conduct your research if you’re marketing yourself as a sustainable firm.
- Do some supplier-type research (manufacturer, distributor, wholesaler)
- Compare the cost, return policy, and product quality.
- deal-making with suppliers
Once you’ve chosen the things you want, you’ll need to think about their storage, cost, and shipping. Our best advice is to perform your due diligence and confirm the caliber of the products and the dependability of the services provided by wholesalers. Take your time, and be prepared to bargain over order sizes, delivery windows, and price.
Create a Sustainable Marketplace
With this choice, you can collaborate with many talented local designers and craftsmen to establish a market. So you’ll source creatives rather than things.
You will need to develop a set of standards for what constitutes sustainable items in order to select vendors for your marketplace. You must draw buyers to your marketplace after you have potential makers.
An example of a market is The Little Market, a fairtrade store with artisanal goods from ethically sourced producers. Its website sells everything, including homemade bath soaps and home furnishings.
The Sharing Economy
There is a tendency toward lending and borrowing rather than buying new things, from sharing our houses via services like Airbnb to sharing our cars through services like Zipcar. The sharing economy not only encourages sustainability, but it also frequently offers people more affordable options.
Several instances include:
- sharing rides
- Renting equipment
- attire and outfit rentals
Loanhood, a new enterprise in the circular economy that encourages peer-to-peer lending and the renting of garments, is doing this successfully. Users can explore other people’s things or post photographs of their own clothing for rental using the app.
Make Your Current Online Business Sustainable
You may already have a successful business and don’t want to start another one, but you’d like to learn how to make it more sustainable. Here are a few things to think about:
- How eco-friendly is your office?
- Your website’s level of greenness
- How can waste be eliminated?
- How eco-friendly are your shipping and transportation?
As you can see, there are numerous business ideas for launching a successful internet venture, and there is no better moment than the present.
Sustainability and environmental friendliness are no longer just trendy buzzwords; for many merchants and companies, becoming green has taken precedence.
It takes a lot of work and preparation to launch a business. But if you can divide your duties and objectives into manageable pieces, it may be quite gratifying on both a psychological and financial level. Good fortune!