Green retailing is an increasingly popular term. More and more retailers around the globe are launching a number of environmentally friendly initiatives to preserve resources and eliminate waste in an effort to contribute as much as possible to the protection of the environment. At the same time, consumers are increasingly focusing on eco-friendly shopping and a greener lifestyle, reflecting new trends in healthy eating and recycling.
Moving Beyond Eco-Friendly Packaging
Going green is moving a step further eco-friendly packaging and paper bags, evolving into a completely new approach to doing business. Consumer decision making is highly influenced by the new trend of greentailing, as greener products are offered to them and greener business processes are adopted by retailers throughout the entire supply chain. From the moment they will identify their needs to the moment they will make their purchase decision, consumers are influenced by green retailing, which becomes practically essential with the threat of global warming and increasing concern about the impact that businesses have on the environment.
The eBay Case
eBay, one of America’s largest retailers with a large customer base that reaches approximately 90 million users, is constantly looking to improve its environmental impact through innovative business practices. Throughout March and April 2010, the retailer run a campaign, encouraging customers to buy items that were made from eco-friendly materials or items that could lower energy consumption or any other resource. Besides, through the campaign eBay collaborated with Team Earth and Cooler Inc. to reduce the carbon footprint as consumers were buying reused products. The funds generated from the campaign were given to environmental and nonprofit organizations such as the Make it Right Foundation.
The Wal-Mart Case
The new Wal-Mart Supercenter in Rockton, Illinois, launched in 2007, consumes nearly 20% less energy than its regular Supercenters due to its energy-efficient systems for heating and cooling (HVAC), refrigeration and lighting. Having installed special water source pump and cooling towers, the outlet can use heating and cooling systems of improved efficiency. Besides, the outlet has installed a daylight harvesting system to block out daylight with the use of skylights throughout the store and light sensors to control the amount of natural light available. When natural daylight is higher, the system automatically turns off the store lights, therefore lowering energy consumption even further.
The Tesco Case
In 2007, Tesco also introduced outlets with energy-efficient heating, cooling and refrigeration systems in an effort to reduce its carbon footprint. Besides, with the use of recycled rainwater and wind turbines, Tesco constantly implements green strategies that are highly likely to lower energy consumption and have an effect on consumer purchasing decision.
In conclusion, both retailers and consumers are becoming increasingly conscious of the need to protect the environment and adopt a greener lifestyle. Particularly, retailers are aware of the energy consumed during the production and distribution of products. This makes them more determined to adopt green business practices to achieve energy efficiency in the retail outlets that their products are sold. Moreover, they try to instill in consumers the mentality of going green in the aim of reducing carbon footprint and anticipating climate changes on a sustainable planet.