Ecommerce & Retail: pursuing sustainability through digital growth

23 Feb 2021

While some companies still exist that are either 100% online or brick-and-mortar, the majority of today’s businesses follow a hybrid model. Therefore, it makes no sense to separate eCommerce and physical retail, and for the most part, strategies in any direction (including sustainability) must be synergized. More specifically, sustainability is growing as an operant buzzword across the board for every business model. Summarily, sustainability, according to ESG criteria, falls under three categories: social, environmental, and corporate governance.

Sustainability in technology, processes and business

To effectively incorporate sustainable business operations, we at VASS believe in three key pressure points for companies to focus on:

Ecommerce, retail technology and infrastructure

It is  important to establish compatible infrastructures, applications, and systems in order to best facilitate the implementation of ESG initiatives. Keep in mind that digital infrastructures consume energy and have environmental side effects. It is therefore essential to optimize storage of the various systems, and their support mechanisms. Thanks to intelligent applications, it is much easier to coordinate between online and offline environments, different stores, orders that can leave the warehouse simultaneously, etc.

Digital and transparent processes

Beyond the processes themselves, execution must also be sustainable, even if one is simply considering shifting regulations and policies surrounding their business. Transparency and traceability makes this goal more easily achieved, and technological  growth has made this easier across the board. This will make it easier to guarantee the sustainability of any company’s final product, leading to universal ESG-standard sustainability.

Sustainability-focused business decisions

At the root of sustainability implementation is the decisions that govern any business, from the design of products, to the definition of the brand image, even to the introduction of sustainable aspects into decision-making models. Every business process is governed by its company’s decision-makers, which trickles down to boots-on-the-ground executors.

The journey towards a more sustainable marketplace is still long, and not all companies are at the same point, in scope nor in culture. Some retailers are still content to remain in regulatory compliance, and others list sustainability as a fundamental pillar of their business model. In either case, corporate culture and technology will be the two main building blocks to reach higher and higher levels of sustainability. This growth offers a wealth of numerous benefits: improved brand image, more financial stability and efficiency, and even something as simple as a better environment. And here at VASS, we are proud to help every company achieve these goals, wherever they are in their own journey.

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