Eco-Friendly Packaging & Customer Expectations

Eco-Friendly Packaging & Customer Expectations

As consumers become more conscious of their shopping habits, they’re looking not only for eco-friendly products – they’re also concerned about sustainable business practices across the board. Millions of items are shipped from Shopify businesses on a daily basis. The way these purchases are packaged and shipped has a major impact on the planet, and customers are taking note.

What is eco-friendly packaging?
Eco-friendly packaging refers to alternatives to typical wasteful packaging like plastics. These alternatives include renewable packaging, compostable poly mailers (bioplastics), recycled kraft shopping bags or filler, biodegradable packing tape and stickers, recycled corrugated cardboard boxes, and other packaging materials that contribute less waste.

Why is eco-friendly packaging important?
Packaging accounts for a huge amount of waste produced globally. Taking steps to replace some of this with sustainable alternatives will reduce the strain on our planet, including plastics that end up in our oceans and deforestation.

What is the most eco-friendly packaging?
There are many alternatives that all have their pros and cons. The best packaging is no packaging at all, but this is an unrealistic standard to meet, especially as an ecommerce company. The most eco-friendly packaging is that which uses the least new resources and is easy to either reuse, home compost, or recycle.

How much does eco-friendly packaging cost?
Eco-friendly packaging may cost more than conventional packaging, and the prices will range widely depending on a number of factors, including material and volume. Buying anything in bulk will save you money and is a great solution for businesses that ship many things in the same size packaging. Compare rates and options. The extra cost is worth it for the positive impact you will make on the planet—and in customer’s minds.

Where can I buy eco-friendly packaging?
There are multiple packaging supplies that offer eco-friendly options from large businesses like Hero Packaging and noissue that offer custom packaging options to business supply stores to marketplaces like Amazon. Weigh the offerings of each of these sources based on your volume and other needs.

Where else can I do?
• Offer carbon-neutral shipping by offsetting emissions. There are a variety of Shopify supported apps that can help you implement this.
• Use sustainable packaging materials that can be repurposed. 
• Offer a returns program for your empty product containers.
• Work with wholesalers to reduce individual shipments.
• Look into reducing the size of your packaging.

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