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Going Green: Switching To Paperless

going green paperless

Many small businesses have searched for ways to adopt greener practices in their operations. There are several alterations that can be made to the outside of the building - such as installing solar panels or painting the roof white - but there are a variety of ways small business owners can make their offices more environmentally friendly.

Telecommuting, sourcing from local vendors and adopting paperless practices may significantly help your business transition to more eco-friendly operations. Reducing the amount of paper waste your business creates each year is essential for saving the environment, as well as your bank account. Paper accounts for 35 percent of the overall waste produced by an average business - a figure that can be greatly reduced among companies that implement paperless initiatives in their operations.

Mobile coupons are key

As you develop your online marketing campaign, consider sending consumers digital coupons complete with bar or QR codes that can be scanned from the device. By encouraging customers to use this format, small business owners may greatly reduce the amount of wasted paper products brought into the store. Additionally, unlike physical coupons, digital ones can be spread to a vast range of potential consumers over a variety of sites - you can feature them on your social networks, website and advertisements. Instead of purchasing space in a printed magazine or newspaper, promote your coupons through in-store displays or social media campaigns, both of which may cost significantly less than placing an ad in a tangible work. 

Remove the receipts

Several businesses already employ tactics that reduce the amount of waste associated with printed receipts. Some cashiers ask consumers if they would like a copy of their receipts, while others use machines that print on very small pieces of paper. However, to eliminate the concern altogether, small businesses should consider dropping paper receipts entirely. Instead, ask consumers to provide their email address so you can digitally send the record of the transaction. This way, you can not only significantly reduce the number of receipts you're printing, but also present a format that may be able to easily collect email addresses from store visitors. When presented with the receipt prompt, be sure to ask consumers if they would like to receive weekly or monthly emails about in-store promotions or coupons they could receive.

Call upon the cloud

Digital storage sites, devices and apps have greatly streamlined certain businesses' operations. Instead of keeping your records in a tangible book or storing paper receipts in a set location, consider moving them to a digital format. This way, your company may be less inclined to print as much material on paper. Several devices have the capacity to store, organize and format information as it is received by the consumer, providing a safe and secure location for these items to stay. Additionally, storing important business information in a digital space ensures that if your store was affected by a physical event, the documents would remain protected in cyberspace.

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