As consumers become increasingly aware of the environmental impacts of their purchasing decisions, more are demanding green business options that help them reduce their carbon footprint. This could be the right time to start an environmentally-friendly business.
According to market research company Global Web Index, half of digital consumers in the U.S. and United Kingdom in late 2018 said environmental concerns impacted their purchasing decisions. In fact, 61% of millennials (ages 22 to 35 at the time of the survey) said they’d pay more for eco-friendly products. Another sign of growth in this space: Some colleges even offer “green majors” to help students prepare to enter the field of environmentally friendly business.
While entrepreneurs wanting to enter this space can look to traditional small business loans for financing, those starting green businesses have unique access to several loans and grants programs:
- The Conservation Fund provides financing for small-to-medium green businesses that create jobs in economically underserved areas
- The federal government also offers a variety of loans and grants for eco-friendly businesses, including some from the Department of Energy, the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Science Foundation
Environmental nonprofit Green America offers a green business certification program, which can show consumers and businesses that your operation meets high standards of eco-friendliness. Obtaining this certification could help attract customers who want to spend at companies that help the environment.