Powerful role of retailers in a more sustainable last-mile delivery

Opinions expressed by contributors are their own.

Choosing to prioritize sustainable practices is an important part of being a responsible citizen of our planet, but it is also smart business. Example: one in four consumers report that “they plan to pay more attention to environmental issues and pay more attention to social aspects in their shopping behavior.” This means you can either be part of the sustainability movement and reach that 25% of consumers, or risk missing out on their business altogether.

In response to altruistic calls for sustainability and consumer preferences, retailers have therefore increasingly taken green initiatives. For example, they can install energy-efficient lighting or aim for a completely neutral CO2 footprint within a certain period. This all helps, but can sustainability practices also be extended to the logistics and execution side? The answer is yes.

Incorporating a variety of sustainable practices

For starters, here are some business areas to consider making more eco-friendly:

  1. View the fleet of your courier service: Does it consist of electric vehicles intended to realize CO2-negative journeys? In 2021 there were an estimated 12 million electric vehicles are in use, but that number is expected to rise closer to 54 million by 2025, making them more readily available to organizations everywhere. However, if you don’t have a provider that uses electric vehicles, ask if they use carbon credits to offset the emissions. Something is better than nothing, although an electric fleet is best of all.

  2. Find logistics companies that use distributed networks: This allows merchants to store their goods in multiple places – and closer to the end customer – so that products don’t have to travel further than necessary.

  3. Work with a logistics provider that provides technology tracking: This should be done so that the sender and receiver can know in real time when a shipment is arriving and if there are any problems. Keeping communication high between both parties reduces the chance of a missed delivery, spoiled perishables, or extra trips. It’s an investment worth making; about 62% of fleets using GPS tracking report a positive impact on their bottom line

  4. Aim to be part of a circular supply chain and partner with companies that also: This means using recyclable packaging or packaging made from recycled materials. Keep in mind some last mile partners can help donate or recycle returned products that are non-reusable.

Related: It’s Official: Customers Prefer Sustainable Companies

Incorporate sustainability into your quote requests

Requests for Proposals (RFPs) are a useful tool in many retail sectors, and logistics is no exception. Yet many companies don’t realize they can incorporate environmentally conscious practices into their RFPs.

Including items from the above list in your RFP achieves two goals: 1. It positions your company as the sustainable brand it is, and 2. It ensures that you end up working with a partner who is just as environmentally aware if you.

Last-mile logistics, in particular, can make a significant impact in terms of efficiency and emissions, both positively and negatively. Remember, therefore, that corporations have the power to reshape industries by encouraging their partners to update their practices. A striking example of this is from IKEA. The global furniture and store brand even has posted its supplier code of conduct set clear expectations of itself, its suppliers and suppliers. Simply put, if you set the standard to only work with eco-friendly providers, you can make a big impact.

Retailers, in particular, have a lot of power to heal our planet from the damage already done and prevent further damage – and they can make significant changes by prioritizing sustainable last-mile deliveries. When all is said and done, preserving the planet requires everyone in the ecosystem to work together with purpose and purpose.

Related: 5 Ways to Transform Your Business into a Sustainable Business

Shreya Christina
Shreya has been with for 3 years, writing copy for client websites, blog posts, EDMs and other mediums to engage readers and encourage action. By collaborating with clients, our SEO manager and the wider team, Shreya seeks to understand an audience before creating memorable, persuasive copy.

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