According to businessesgrow.com, as of 2011 only a little more than half (56%) of small businesses have a website.
Although there has been a steady increase of small businesses investing in website and online marketing services since 2009, this still leaves 44% of small businesses with little-to-no online presence.
Other than the obvious fact that the Internet is a widely used resource for e-commerce, having a website and marketing online also helps the environment.
Here are four reasons why creating a website and actively marketing your business online can help your company “Go Green:”
- It’s Virtually Paperless – Creating a website and using it to market yourself online is a virtually paperless endeavor. In many cases, the only paper involved will be the contract drawn up between your company and the online marketing company you partner with.
- Mobile Phones Eliminate the need to print coupons, flyers, etc. – If your company tends to promote via coupons and special promotions, you may be spending thousands of dollars a year designing flyers and paying someone to hand them out. Although some people may come in and use the coupons, many people don’t even look at flyers they are handed on the street, and often toss them in the closest available garbage can. With the emergence of Smart Phones, you can simply send promotions via email marketing, social media or your website, and users can simply bring in their mobile phones to receive the deal. There are also apps available that will track usage so the coupon cannot be redeemed more than once.
- Email Marketing vs. Mailers – Sending out mailers is another popular marketing tactic, but once again, many people receive these in their mailbox and toss them in the trash. Sending out an email newsletter to customers and potential new clients will be the most environmentally sound way to get the same information out. Although some people may delete your email and consider it spam, at least a tree didn’t have to die to send the email. You are also able to reach a much larger audience in an instant versus the couple hundred people you may hand flyers to over the course of a few hours.
- Catalogs vs. E-commerce – Another reason why building a website and using online marketing is more environmentally friendly than the traditional ways of advertising is the ability to reduce the number of or eliminate paper catalogs altogether. Creating an e-commerce store on your website allows customers to more easily make purchases from you and they can do it 24/7, not just during regular retail hours. You can even invest in packaging materials that are made of recycled goods to boost the appeal of your e-commerce store.