Is your SME as green as it could be?

Digital and innovation

14 August 2017

Small businesses can make a big impact on the environment. According to the FSB, SMEs account for 99.9% of private sector businesses in the UK.

If each one of those became an environmentally friendly business by reducing carbon footprints and emissions, the scale of change would be tremendous.

Of course, it’s one thing to aspire to change and quite another to instigate it. That’s why we’ve put together these top tips on how to make your business greener, ranging from eco-friendly products to ensuring employees adopt green habits.

Get an energy audit

Make the most of industry bodies and government initiatives like the Energy Saving Trust that will help you work out where your eco-friendly focus should lie.

Build an ethos

Create a green vision statement for your company. This will make it easier to set clear goals and communicate your message, as well as help your team, customers and clients to understand your newest initiatives.

Buy sustainably

Eco-friendly products are available for lots of uses. Look out for products like 100% recycled paper and biodegradable cleaning products.

Understand the labels

Finding eco-friendly products can feel like a bit of a minefield. Sites like can help familiarise you with the various labels and certifications.

Buy energy-saving equipment

Next time you change your light bulbs, go for compact fluorescent (CFL) or LED options. They last longer and use less energy than conventional light bulbs.

Compare energy suppliers

Switch to an energy supplier that uses renewable sources, as opposed to fossil fuels, and you can instantly cut your carbon footprint.

Be flexible

Working from home reduces emissions by cutting commutes. It’s also great for attracting the best employees. A 2016 global survey by Regus found that 61% of people would switch jobs for one that offers flexible working.

Encourage cycling and running

If you can’t let your team work from home, encourage them to cycle or run to the office instead. The government's cycle-to-work scheme is designed to encourage more active lifestyles by offering bikes to employees as a tax-free benefit.

Spread the word

Bring your colleagues and customers on board with going green. Organisations like the Carbon Trust have free posters and stickers you can download to boost employee awareness, and you can even engage customers by calling on them for ideas or support via your social media accounts.

Price properly

Surveys suggest consumers will often pay more for a product if they’re from an environmentally-friendly business. Don’t suffer financially to achieve your goals, let your green customers proudly support your green business.

Follow our tips above and your business could be making its first step towards cutting its carbon footprint.