Tips and Advice

Sustainable SMEs: a growing trend

21 September 2022 / per Cerdá Group

The world is changing, and with it, companies, businesses and even consumers themselves.

Sustainability and digitalisation are becoming an increasingly important factor in SMEs, because this is what the planet needs, what societies require and what consumers are beginning to demand.

Care for the environment demands that businesses have a new social and environmental responsibility to incorporate into their brands, and all those that do not implement it will be relegated to second place compared to the competition and will lose the favour of a large part of consumers. This is what is starting to happen now and will gradually increase. Sustainable SMEs are the present and the future.


So get down to work and prepare your business. At Cerdá we explain and help you to achieve your objectives so that you can continue to be part of your market and capture the attention of consumers.

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What is sustainability in an SME?

Business sustainability involves the creation of a new economic model that guarantees a perfect balance between the economic, social and environmental impact of a company. And all of this must be focused on contributing to the well-being of society in the medium and long term.

What is the importance of sustainable SMEs?

Evolution is part of human DNA and everything we do is subject to it. Sustainability is yet another step that is taking root in our societies and that makes it possible to guarantee a future for new generations. Moreover, implementing a good sustainability strategy has great benefits for SMEs. Some of them are:

  • Improving the image of the business

Implementing a sustainability and digitalisation strategy helps to significantly improve the business's own image. It is one of the main values with which users currently feel most identified. Many of them are more inclined to buy your products than those of your competitors.

Consumers' perception of the company is therefore one of trust and security.


  • Cost reduction  

Turning our company into a sustainable SME may involve an economic investment but, on the one hand, it can be done progressively, with small steps and, on the other hand, in the long run, it will favour the reduction of the company's costs. By promoting circularity, better use is made of all resources, which reduces costs.

What should a retail business consider when creating its sustainability strategy?

As mentioned above, sustainable retail should not only focus on economic and environmental aspects, but also consider its impact on society and its own corporate structure.

Therefore, some of the most important aspects that a sustainable company should keep in mind are:

-       Environmental protection

-       Equality policies

-        Proximity trade

-        Business ethics

-       Reducing waste

-        Energy savings

-        Efficiency of available resources

-        Transparent communication

--         Helping the most vulnerable groups


What are the main sustainability trends in the retail sector?  

Some of the main trends being implemented for sustainable retailing are:

Sustainable consumption

Production chains and products must be more efficient and environmentally friendly. To achieve this, companies are starting to use ecological products, recyclable or biodegradable packaging, sustainable raw materials...

Technology and digitalisation

These aspects are essential in order to meet the needs of consumers, and sustainability and digitalisation go hand in hand in the sector.

Thanks to them, a closer relationship with customers is achieved, providing a more exclusive and personalised service, and better communication and, therefore, effectiveness in all processes is achieved with suppliers.

Equality for all

Equality is another indisputable factor that a sustainable company must apply. Therefore, it is necessary to work on company ethics that promote equality and the reconciliation of work and personal life. And, of course, family life.

Circular economy

The circular economy is key to sustainable retailing. Strategies must be put in place to reduce the company's energy consumption and environmental impact, including its carbon footprint.

Production and supply chains must be circular, which requires the avoidance of waste in all processes, from production to the reuse of packaging.


Use of renewable energy sources

SMEs must save energy resources but also reduce packaging and work with 100% renewable energies to limit their carbon footprint as much as possible.

Fair trade

Of course, the sustainability and digitalisation of a company in the retail sector must also include a sustainable strategy that takes fair trade into account. A sustainable company must also be concerned about the welfare of the society in which it works, paying fair wages, respecting legal working hours and trying to improve the living conditions of its employees as much as possible.

So, now you know! If you want to be part of the present and the future of your sector and be part of sustainable retail, prepare a good sustainability and digitalisation strategy for your business. 

At Cerdá we will help you to achieve it so that you can succeed and meet the requirements and expectations of consumers and the environment.

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