6 Eco-friendly Solutions that Can Add Revenue for a Small Business

How would you feel if you could improve your business’ revenue while helping the environment? There are several eco-friendly practices that you can take advantage of that will minimise the threat of pollution to the environment, while rewarding your business with revenue or cost savings.

Don’t believe me? Well, here are six solutions that you can start taking advantage of today.

Energy-efficient office lighting
photo credit: David Wall / Flickr

1. Improve the lighting design of your business

Lighting typically accounts for 15% of a business’s overhead expenses. This can be minimised by maximising the amount of natural light and leveraging energy-efficient lighting solutions like LED lightbulbs.

The first thing entrepreneurs should look for is a building that has been built with eco-friendliness in mind. Typically, the design of these buildings will use skylights, solar tubes, and large windows to maximise the amount of natural light in the building. Additionally, the interior design of the buildings will incorporate mirrors, shiny metals, brightly painted walls and glass items to enhance the brightness of the room.

The artificial lighting that’s used should improve people’s alertness. LED lights that emit above 4000 lumens replicate a similar brightness to natural sunlight. Unlike incandescent bulbs, LED light technology requires significantly less power to illuminate areas. Businesses that have switched from incandescent lighting to LEDs report more than 50% in cost savings, making LEDs a good solution both economically and for the environment. You can use the following calculator to estimate the cost savings for your business.

2. Mobile phone recycling programs

Do many people in your business use mobile phones in their day-to-day activities? Most businesses get their phones upgraded once every two years, and the old phones are usually tossed out in the garbage. Instead, send the used phones to recyclers who will happily purchase the phone from you for a nominal fee.

Most phones can fetch $50 or more. However, if you want to earn more you can sell the phones on auction or classified websites, which should yield at least $100 or more per phone.

3. Return printer cartridges to OEMs for a rebate

Empty ink cartridges

You can minimise your business’s contribution to landfill by using printer cartridges from original manufacturers that ethically recycle them once they are used. In some cases, the original manufacturer will pay a rebate for the return of the printer cartridges.

4. Recycle cans, bottles and plastics in return for cash

There are specialist recyclers that are happy to take your organisations cans, bottles or products and exchange them for cash. For example, ThinkCans “Cash for cans” scheme rewards people with up to $1 for every kilogram of cans that’s recycled.

5. Sell any unused cardboard boxes

Many people aren’t aware of the extra cash that can be made from selling cardboard boxes for storage or moving purposes. Big boxes are easier to sell and can fetch $2 or more. Look online for any recycling partners that would be happy to purchase the boxes; otherwise you can sell the boxes on classified or auction websites.


6. Donate or sell any unused electronics

There are several businesses that are happy to sell your unused electronics and give you a slice of the profits. For example, your organisation might upgrade all of the computers across the organisation. Rather than have the computers disposed as e-waste, organisations can sell the computers to schools or other organisations, effectively getting rid of the waste and earning you an income at the same time.


These are just a few ways your business can get rewarded for implementing sustainable activities. Get in touch with your local authority to see what programs are available in your area today!