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How can SMEs be more sustainable?

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by Startacus Admin

Gary Styles

Gary Styles, CEO and Founder at sustainability platform Zellar shares his insights on why sustainability matters and what small businesses can do to make a difference

pexels-photo-1072824.jClimate change is a big issue but as a small business, you may not think you have much of an impact. However small and medium businesses account for over 99% of the private sector and together can make a huge contribution to the state of our planet.

Why become a sustainable business?

Becoming more sustainable is no longer an option, it’s a necessity to ensure the future of our planet and your business. Becoming a sustainable business is about taking responsibility for the impact you have on the environment and trying to have the least negative effect possible.

For the future

The UK government is determined to tackle climate change and has pledged to reduce emissions by 78% by 2035 compared to 1990s levels and ultimately to become Net Zero by 2030. By committing to becoming a sustainable business now this will help you meet future legislation. By implementing a sustainability strategy that focuses on both the short and long term, you will position your business at the forefront of climate change action.

For the planet

The IPCC has predicted that we need to limit the global temperature increase to 1.5c if we are to reduce the chances of irreversible climate change and loss of species. If SMEs are able to understand their carbon footprint and where to make changes in their operations to become more sustainable, it will help to minimise the amount of emissions emitted and help to keep the rising temperature to a minimum.

For your customers and stakeholders

zellar logoWith more and more people wanting to make sustainable purchases, eco-credentials are vital in attracting and retaining customers and stakeholders. Businesses that don’t recognise the importance of their consumers’ green values risk falling behind the competition. A 2021 Deloitte survey showed that nearly a third of consumers stopped buying from a brand because they had ethical or sustainability concerns about them. By sharing your commitment to sustainability you can help improve your brand image and make it easier for your customers to know why they should choose your product or brand over another.

For saving time and money

Many businesses are put off sustainability as they believe becoming a sustainable business will be costly, however, this isn’t the case. Becoming more sustainable is about understanding how you operate and how you can make this more efficient so you emit fewer emissions. Increasing your efficiency and improving your operations means you’re not only saving the planet but also time and money.

How to become a sustainable business?

Many SMEs want to become sustainable however feel unsure how to get there and where to make the necessary changes in their business. According to the Centre for Economics and Business Research Ltd, 78% of businesses don't know where to start to become more sustainable. That’s where Zellar helps, providing advice, actions and benchmarking specifically tailored for 64 different sectors businesses can easily take significant action and publicise their actions on the platform. It's a win-win opportunity for business and the planet.

600x200 Zellar is a recently launched sustainability platform, which wants to help enable every UK small business to reach Net Zero by 2030. It’s the world’s first community platform making sustainability simple, accessible and affordable for SMEs with prices starting from just £125 per year. Zellar provides everything businesses need to become Net Zero all in one place by offering a range of services from local biodiversity and offsetting projects, to options for adopting green technology or energy. Zellar helps businesses to benchmark, manage, offset and promote their sustainability journey. Whether businesses are just beginning their journey or wanting more ways to improve, Zellar can provide the data and insight businesses need to better understand where they are now and how to improve. Zellar’s benchmarking helps business owners to understand also how their business fares in comparison to others in their industry. With customised roadmaps for 64 micro sectors, businesses get advice and recommendations based on their operations.

By signing up, businesses will:

  • Help to tackle climate change
  • Practising Net Zero best practise by reducing emissions as much as possible and offsetting the remainder
  • Attract top talent by demonstrating your commitment to sustainability
  • Gain more customers and prospects as increasingly more consumers are buying from sustainable businesses
  • Increase profits by transitioning to green suppliers and energy
  • Support local communities and environments and encourage others to act responsibly – we’re all in this together
  • Become a sustainable business which will be better for your profits, customers and our climate


Gary Styles is an entrepreneur and CEO and Founder at Zellar. Passionate about creating immediate, positive and lasting change for our planet, he created Zellar to make positive climate action easy and accessible for everyone. A problem-solver at heart, Gary knew that people needed and wanted to change and become more sustainable but didn’t know how. With climate change the biggest issue of our generation, he couldn’t wait until it was too late.


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Published on: 13th October 2021

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