After many years of shipping my antiques on Etsy I noticed a lot of the material I was using was not eco-friendly. I went on a quest to make some easy “earth friendly” changes in my shop.
Here are some easy fast changes to make your Etsy shop more eco-friendly.
- Bio Degradable Mailing Bags/ Poly Bags…
- Craft Roll Paper (Butcher Paper)…
- Biodegradable Thank You Stickers…
- Eco-friendly Shipping Labels…
Why is Eco-Friendly Packaging Important?
There is a strong movement towards eco-friendly packaging. The online consumer today is looking for companies to be accountable for using eco-friendly packing when shipping products. Our customers want us to make an impact on the environment. With the recent high increase in E-commerce shopping it is our responsibility as small business owners to help the cause. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) “Packaging represents almost two thirds of all trash in the U.S.” Shocking!
Top 4 Shipping Supplies You Can Use Today
After years of selling on Etsy I decided it was time to switch my shop packaging to Eco- Friendly choices to help plant earth. Read below the swap outs I made for my shipping supplies. As a bonus, after switching to eco-Friendly packaging I was a bit surprised that I saved money on some items after this switch.
1. Bio Degradable Mailing Bags/ Poly Bags
My poly mailbags are a necessity to my shop. I was not aware at how long it takes for plastic shipping bags to decompose. According to Thoughco.com the plastic base we us in our everyday life takes 10-20 years to decompose. After thinking of all the plastic shipping bags we use as online merchants and how it affects our planet I knew I needed to make a change.
I needed to find a better eco-friendly solution fast.
My Original Choice : Mailing Poly Bags
These self-adhesive shipping bags were great for mailing out my antiques. Many times my items are made of vintage paper so the fact they are water tight drew me to this bag. However, these bags are not an eco-friendly choice.
New Eco-Friendly Choice : Poly Biodegradable Shipping Bags
These Poly shipping bags are Eco Friendly as they are 100% biodegradable and compostable.
CLICK HERE to find this product on Amazon.
2. Kraft Roll Paper (Butcher Paper)
I’ve been shipping products for 4+ years now. For many years I have used bubble wrap to secure my items inside the box to avoid breakage. A seller friend tipped me off to her economical alternative to this shipping problem: Use Kraft Roll Paper! Kraft paper is a great eco-friendly alternative to bubble wrap. When I began selling I would go through reams of bubble wrap to secure my breakable items inside my shipping box. Now I use crunched Kraft paper as padding and it works well.
Some Kraft paper is both biodegradable and recyclable while some craft paper is recyclable only. Don’t get fooled by the difference.
Definition of biodegradable : Capable of being broken down especially into innocuous products by the action of living things (such as microorganisms)
Definition of recycle: To reuse or make (a substance) available for reuse for biological activities through natural processes of biochemical degradation or modification.Merriam-Webser Dictionary
My Original Choice : Craft Roll Paper
Although this craft paper is recyclable it is not biodegradable. This means that you can toss this paper into the cycling bin safely, however, it will not break down as quickly into the environment as it is not biodegradable.
New Eco-Friendly Choice : Craft Roll Paper
CLICK HERE to find this product on ECOENCLOSE
This eco-friendly choice was purchased from EcoEnclose. Although my original choice purchased at Amazon is made of recycle paper it is not biodegradable. The reason I like this craft roll paper from EcoEnclose over my Amazon purchase is that it is not only eco-friendly but also biodegradable.
A note about price: I found the echo-friendly roll from EcoEnclose was a few dollars more. However, It’s important to see that when buying in bulk with $150 I saved $16.00 buying the eco-friendly option. Not only are you more green with the EcoEnclose brand you are saving a little money when buying in bulk. If you are not at the point that you wish to buy in bulk just yet the Amazon roll is a good second option.
PRO TIP: The 3 Main Ways I Use Craft Roll Paper
This paper has saved me time and money as it is a cheaper alternative to stuffing with bubble wrap. Most bubble wrap is not earth friendly. If you choose the eco-friendly option above not only is your paper eco-friendly but it is also bio- degradable.
3. Biodegradable Thank You Stickers
When it comes to packing stickers there is no way around it, you must pay a premium for eco-friendly products. I have done the research and found that if you want an eco-friendly label the price will increase. I stared with a simple thank-you label for my thank-you cards.
My Original Choice : Thank You Stickers From Amazon
I have used these stickers for a year. I honestly really enjoy them. These stickers go on the cover of all my thank-you cards. However, as with most labels, the shiny release paper backing is coated with a silicone polymerm. The backing on this sticker are not eco-friendly.
New Eco-Friendly Choice: Biodegradable Thank You Stickers
You can find these amazing biodegradable thank you stickers on Etsy.com. These environmentally friendly, 100% recycled labels are biodegradable as well. Although the cost is a bit higher for these stickers they are a great eco-friendly alternative to regular stickers. Click the link above to visit this earth loving shop. You’ll find some amazing products in Amelia’s store.
4. Eco-friendly Shipping Labels
I was so excited to get my new Dymo 4XL Label writer. This thermal label printer has saved me so much time and effort when addressing my packages. I did my research and found the best reviewed and most economical printer labels for this label printer. However, are these labels eco-friendly?
My Original Choice :Shipping Labels
I love these label but I do not love that they are not earth friendly.
New Eco-Friendly Choice: Biodegradable Printer Labels
These labels do cost a bit more than the average shipping label. What I like about them is that they are certified compostable labels. These direct thermal labels do not have a protective top coat which means they are earth friendly.
Tips Bonus: Recycle Stamps!
Now that you are putting your eco-friendly plan in action you need to tell the world. Stand out from the rest and show your customers that you’re a company that cares about the environment. I found these fantastic round recycle stamps with wooden handles on Etsy.com. I use these stamps on my recycled boxes and thank-you cards. These stamps are a great way promote awareness of the importance to recycle and reuse.
As a business owner making small changes in our packaging can mean a substantial difference in the world we live in. Using these eco-friendly products promote green living. Be a strong role model for future entrepreneurs, stand up in what you believe in, and show your customers that you’re a shop that cares.