17 Ways To Be A More Sustainable Business In 2024

3 Nov 2023

17 Ways To Be A More Sustainable Business In 2024
17 Ways To Be A More Sustainable Business In 2024

If there’s one business decision that’s no longer optional, it’s whether or not to become a greener, more environmentally-conscious company.

That’s because every business must do its bit to reduce its carbon emissions, especially as we head into 2024. 

The topic of sustainability can be daunting for any business. But just know that taking the time to learn not to mention adapting your products, services and even your marketing can have a huge impact. 

Here are 17 sustainability tips from the EcoSend team to inspire you for 2024.

These include new sustainable initiatives that have been introduced to us by our podcast guests. Plus learnings based on conversations we’ve had with like-minded climate-conscious businesses. 💡🍃

#1 - Use Eco-Friendly Email Marketing Tools 

Did you know that 300 billion emails are sent every day?

There’s a good chance your business makes up part of this stat, especially if you do any kind of email marketing. While there’s no need to actually give up email marketing, switching to a sustainable email marketing provider such as EcoSend can lower the carbon footprint of your emails.

With every email sent generating up to 26g of carbon, the emails we all send and receive contribute towards the problem. However, your choice of email platform can reduce the amount of CO2 generated by your campaigns. 

So how does EcoSend work? You'll still get all the email tools and features you need to send amazing email campaigns! But, EcoSend runs on renewable energy sources and we’ll plant trees on your behalf just for using us. 💡🍃

👉 ✉️ Grab your free trial of EcoSend

#2 - Reduce Emissions From Hosting Or Attending Events

Events went away for a little while but now they are back. The problem with that is so too are the carbon emissions generated from event-related travel, venue infrastructure, logistics, catering, printed materials, promotional materials and the event equipment. 

So how big is the problem? Research by MeetGreen found that the average event attendee creates around 176.67 KG of CO2.

For example, corporate events can include trade shows, workshops, product launches, team building activities and awards nights. Whatever event type your business is planning on hosting or attending, attention needs to be paid to reducing your carbon footprint from doing so.  

Opting for remote or hybrid events can instantly cut emissions from events, as too can a consideration of the event location, transport, logistics and other resources needed. 

Bonus points if you can also attend actual sustainable events, such as the Net Zero Festival which the EcoSend team attended in November 2023.

#3 - Use A Green Web Hosting Provider

In our post How To Get A Zero Carbon Website we gave you some unmissable tips on reducing your digital carbon footprint, including our top list of green web hosting providers.

Similar to email marketing, few people think about the carbon footprint of their website. In reality, all websites require energy to make, load and share. 

By using a green web hosting provider, your website will be powered by renewable energy sources. While further work may be needed to reduce the carbon footprint of your website, green web hosting certainly goes a long way to help. 

#4 - Retrofit Your Office For Improved Energy Efficiency 

If your business has an office space, or even if you work from home, making some improvements to the energy efficiency of where you work is a great way to cut both carbon emissions and costs in one move. 

Getting an energy efficiency survey done can give you some tailored pointers based on your office building or home. 

But in general, some ways of retrofitting a building to improve energy efficiency can include:

  • Adding insulation to walls, floors or roof spaces

  • Replacing old windows and doors with energy efficient glazing and frame materials

  • Sealing gaps where heat is escaping

  • Insulated rendering (EWI)

  • Solar panels to replace gas or electric power as much as possible

  • Green construction materials used for renovation works

  • Smart technology to control energy use and reduce waste

  • Using thermal window film

  • Replacing old lighting with energy efficient LED

Got any more ideas based on work you’ve done to make your office greener? Let us know! 

Discover more ideas: 11 Green Construction & Home Renovation Trends For 2024

#6 - Use One Rather Than Multiple Screens At Work

This one is going to generate a few grumbles for you developers out there. But hear us out. 

Research by Le Monde found that the typical carbon footprint of computer screens sized between 24 and 27 inches can be up to 750kg. It added that when a laptop is combined with two monitors, the carbon footprint of that tech setup can triple. 

If your entire team uses multiple screens and you can cut down to one screen each, there are huge carbon savings to be made. 

#5 - Upcycle, Recycle Or Donate Old Office Furniture & Equipment 

If you do plan on reducing the number of screens you use at work, or even upgrading old or inefficient tech - why not donate it instead of sending it to landfill?

The EcoSend team recently did just that, when we donated some old office tech to Community Tech Aid. Based in London, Community Tech Aid refurbishes laptops, phones and tablets that have been donated and gives them to those in the community who are in need of such equipment.

Beyond tech equipment, there’s always someone who would appreciate your old office furniture. Places such as Gumtree make it easy to donate your old items for free. 

Discover: Hull’s Library Of Stuff Is Reducing Waste, Household Clutter & CO2

#6 - Provide Corporate Sustainability Training For Your Team

They say knowledge is power. So when it comes to improving your sustainability efforts as a business, why limit the conversion to the CEO or management? 

Sustainability training comes in many forms. But the central aim is to make everyone aware of how they can do their bit while at work to reduce the carbon footprint of the business. 

If the research we mentioned in our post What Is Climate Quitting? is anything to go by, your team is more eager to do their bit than you think. 

This is based on 70% of workers saying they would be ‘proud’ to work for an employer who was committed to climate action. 

#7 - Consider Switching To A Four Day Week

By taking one day a week off the typical 5 day work week, it’s perhaps no surprise that 1/5th of the carbon emissions generated by commuting can be reduced. 

Even if your business works remotely, less time spent working can result in reduced digital carbon emissions from things such as email marketing, using Zoom or even having lots of computer equipment switched on for longer.

It's common to assume that working less days means also less output for your business. However, a four day week study actually found that productivity increased by 22% and 65% fewer sick days were taken.

So think less dress down Friday and more switch off Friday. 😴

Read More: How A Four-Day Week Could Solve The Climate Crisis

#8 - Switch To Renewable Home Or Office Energy 

As a business owner, you pay utility charges on things such as electricity or gas. So if you want to become a more sustainable business, it makes sense to switch to a renewable energy supplier for your operations, including if you work from home.

Renewable energy suppliers generate energy from the likes of solar and wind power. If you’re based in the UK, you might find our post A Full List Of Green Energy Suppliers In The UK helpful.

#9 - Use Green Pension Providers 

Did you know that where you save or invest your money can impact the climate crisis?

On the EcoSend podcast Series 2 Episode 1, Dan Sherrard Smith told us that for every £5,000 someone holds in a Barclays current account, it equates to about 1.5 tonnes of CO2 per year.

Make My Money Matter also states that “much of the £2.6 trillion in UK pensions is contributing to the deforestation of the Amazon, helping tobacco companies sell cigarettes, and funding new fossil fuel projects.”

As a business, you can play your part by using green pension providers, and also sharing green savings and investment ideas with your team. 

#10 - Unplug Electrical Devices When Not In Use

It’s a tip we all know we should be doing. The question is, do you actually do it? 🔌

As a business, you could reduce your energy consumption by up to 10% just by unplugging appliances that you’re not using. So whether that’s equipment in the middle of the day, or when you’re ready to go home in the evening - don’t leave stuff switched on that’s not in use.

According to Uswitch, the average electricity bill in the UK for 2023 is £738.45. For businesses, this figure is likely much higher. So the ability to save circa £73+ in every office or home which is somehow connected to your business (factoring in remote working) isn’t a bad deal.  

This is even before you get to the carbon savings! 

#11 - Own Your Office? Build An Office Rooftop Garden 

While this post may be dedicated to becoming a more sustainable business, let’s not forget the need to improve biodiversity for just a second.

Adding a green roof or garden to your office roof can be extremely beneficial for the environment in your local area. This is especially the case if you work in an urbanised area with few green spaces.

Some of the most common associated benefits of rooftop gardens include:

  • Improved air quality

  • Increased bird and insect habitats

  • Rainwater management

  • Thermal regulation to reduce heating and cooling needs

  • Can be used to grow produce

  • Longer roof lifespan to reduce repairs and material requirements

  • Reduced noise pollution 

Adding a green roof can also increase the value of a building, which could be yet another incentive for business owners to add one to their space. 

Don’t have a rooftop? Introducing real office plants is the next best thing, and can also have benefits for productivity and wellbeing. 

#12 - Reduce Physical Waste Produced By Your Business

While SaaS businesses might have a larger digital carbon footprint, most other businesses create some kind of physical waste. 

Waste can come in various forms such as plastic, cardboard, e-waste (electronic equipment), textiles, packaging, food, construction materials, furniture, clothing and scrap metal. 

As a business, your products and services may produce certain types of waste. However, other types of waste may also be produced by attending events, creating physical marketing materials or even renovating your office space.

So now is the time to think broadly about how you can reduce your material consumption and overall waste output across your entire business. 

#13 - Support Remote Or Hybrid Working 

A recent report by The Guardian found that "people who work from home all the time cut emissions by 54%" compared with those who work in an office.

We know that remote working or hybrid working isn’t a new concept.

However, 44% of companies still don’t support remote working according to Apollo Technical. 

Granted, not every job role can be done remotely. But where your team can perform their duties with a computer and internet connection, there can be huge benefits for the climate. 

In fact, when much of the world switched to remote working in April 2020, this resulted in a 17% total reduction in global CO2 emissions compared with the same time in 2019.

#14 - Stop Making & Clicking On Made For Advertising (MFA) Websites 

Many advertisers use clickbait as a trick to get people to click on their content. As a result, they make money from the display ads shown on the page.

However, companies are being urged to move away from this business model, after it was found that the amount of CO2 generated by clickbait per year is the equivalent of flying 1.35 million people from London to Paris. It would require 3.7 million trees to absorb this amount of carbon. 

We’re hopeful that no business reading this post uses clickbait to promote their own products and services. But even avoiding clicking on clickbait news articles or blogs can also reduce CO2 emissions. 

In short, don’t create or support clickbait. 

Read more: The Carbon Footprint Of Clickbait

#15 - Collaborate With Like-Minded Sustainable Organisations 

As a business, it’s not always possible to do it all alone. In particular, the fear of greenwashing or greenhushing often holds businesses back when it comes to making environmentally-conscious changes.

However, by collaborating with sustainable organisations as well as your fellow business leaders, important and insightful conversions can be had. Remember, this is a learning curve for everyone! 

In 2023, EcoSend partnered with TreeApp, who now plants all of our trees based on our customer usage. We’re also constantly learning about how to be more sustainable through the guests we meet on the EcoSend Podcast

So what we’d say to other businesses big and small is to do the same. Get talking, make connections, attend sustainability events and learn how you can play your part. So long as you don’t shy away from the climate crisis, you’re at least moving in the right direction.

🗞️ - Want to keep up to speed with our efforts to reduce our impact on the environment? Sign up for the EcoSend Weekly Newsletter

#16 - Offer Eco-Friendly Packaging Or Delivery Options

If your business sells any kind of physical products, then reducing the amount of packaging you use while lowering CO2 from shipping and logistics should be a priority for 2024.

141 million tonnes of plastic packaging is generated every year. With 99% of plastic being made from fossil fuels that adds up to a huge problem for the environment. 

Online shoppers are well aware of the issue, as Statista found that 81% of consumers believed items ordered online contain too much packaging.

In a recent episode of the EcoSend podcast, we met Chemist-turned-Entrepreneur Loïc Vandermeeren who is trying to change things for the world of packaging, by making it his mission to eliminate single-use delivery boxes.

In 2024, it's time for every business to take a leaf out of Loïc's book.

#17 - Monitor & Track Progress With ESG Reporting

The Drum reports that 51% of digital advertising businesses aren’t measuring their carbon emissions. It’s fair to say that whether your business sells software or socks, that kind of mantra just won’t do if we are to solve the climate crisis. 

That’s why for 2024, every business should look to monitor and track its carbon emissions through ESG reporting.

Also pay attention to sustainable vs regenerative efforts to help the climate. That’s because we can’t just sustain what we’re doing. Instead, we must do more to make up for the last 100+ years of damaging output that has led us to where we are now. 

EcoSend Sustainable Email Marketing - Email Campaigns That Plant Trees

Inspired by the above tips to become a more sustainable business in 2024?

Whatever changes you make to lower your carbon footprint as a business, we hope sustainable email marketing will be one of them!

Scroll up to get a free trial of EcoSend. Or if you’re ready to jump in, our email marketing packages start at just $29 per month.

Have any questions about using EcoSend for your business? Let’s chat! 

You can also learn more about EcoSend by following us on LinkedIn.

About the author

Rachael O'Flaherty

Content Writer

About the author

Rachael O'Flaherty

Content Writer

Grow your business sustainably

Get the EcoSend Weekly newsletter — inspiration, helpful tips, and a good giggle, every Friday.

Grow your business sustainably

Get the EcoSend Weekly newsletter — inspiration, helpful tips, and a good giggle, every Friday.

Grow your business sustainably

Get the EcoSend Weekly newsletter — inspiration, helpful tips, and a good giggle, every Friday.

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Win new customers, send better email, and make the planet better with every campaign.

  • Free Email Templates

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  • Automated Campaigns

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  • Team Sharing

  • HTML Email Editor

  • Multi-channel Campaigns

  • Drip Campaigns

  • MailChimp Import

  • Zapier Integration

  • Powerful API

The email marketing platform for better business

Win new customers, send better email, and make the planet better with every campaign.

  • Free Email Templates

  • Smart Segmentation

  • Lead Forms

  • Automated Campaigns

  • Automatic Offsetting

  • Team Sharing

  • HTML Email Editor

  • Multi-channel Campaigns

  • Drip Campaigns

  • MailChimp Import

  • Zapier Integration

  • Powerful API