A Study of Green Practices Adopted by Small Retailers in Chennai
Green is the desirable colour of business today. All kinds of businesses, manufacturing or retailing have recognized that in order to maintain a competitive edge in the marketplaces they must create a green brand image in the minds of consumers. This is possible not by just making an eco friendly organically produced product offering but by creating a buying experience that is green from start to end. So while making a green product is one area that requires engineering focus, managerial and marketing prowess needs to be exercised in creating a green retailing experience. The entire shopping experience must be ‘green’ with paperless processes, low energy showrooms, lean or reusable packaging, recyclable materials etc. With the retailing sector growing at galloping rates, governments are also brining in policy initiatives in this regard. The government of Tamil Nadu ban of one time use plastics in retail packing with effect from January 1, 2019 is a case in point. The study explores the extent of green initiatives prevalent among small retailers in Chennai. While using natural lighting and ventilation to save energy seems popular, going completely paperless in all processes is still a distant dream. The study also examines relationship between retailer demographics of age and retail format and adoption of green practices. It is found that that while retail format and certification are related to each other, age of the outlet has no relationship with the need to adopt energy saving practices. In conclusion the study measures retailer perception of the impact of green initiatives on the retail business. It is found that while customers appreciate the green initiatives recognition in the form of awards is lacking.