16/08/2022 - Making the web a little greener | Website Blog | Purple Creative Studio
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Making the web a little greener

When I was having a look on LinkedIn last week I noticed a post by someone suggesting that if you deleted just one image from your website then you were making an environmentally conscious decision to make your website more sustainable. I carried on scrolling my feed, but the post stuck with me and I couldn’t get it out of my head.  Could it really be that simple to make websites greener?  

The internet is a huge consumer of energy and web pages produce CO2, it is hard to find an exact figure but the BBC reported that the internet produces roughly 3.7% of global carbon emissions. Now 3.7% sounds small, but that is the same as the airline industry and emissions are expected to double by 2025.

Why not have a look at how much Carbon your website produces here: https://www.websitecarbon.com/

So I have gone on the hunt to put together some top tips on how you can make your website a bit more friendly to the planet. 

Plant a Tree with your Purchase

If you run an ecommerce website, why not give shoppers the option to purchase and plant a tree with every purchase they make? There are some truly brilliant companies out there that have seamlessly integrated this with their checkout.  Or alternatively, you could plant a tree for every order, building your own Digital Forest. 

If you don’t have an ecommerce shop you could still plant a tree, we plant a tree every time we launch a website in the companies name to say thank you for choosing us to work with.


Now I know that removing just one image is never going to save the planet, however the idea behind it makes sense to me. If you delete irrelevant images then your website is producing less carbon, and whilst that might be miniscule, if we all did it, it may make a difference.  You can also make sure that all of your images are resized and reduced in size so that you are not putting huge image files on the website meaning that you are producing less Carbon every time someone looks at your website. 


Whilst we are on with decluttering, a general tidy up of your website is a good environmentally concious thing to do. Removing irrelevant and outdated pages, information and files from your website means you are storing and serving up less Data and Carbon every time someone visits your website. A positive benefit of this decluttering is that users will hopefully be able to find what they are looking for much easier and the content left will be valuable high quality content. 


I love a video on a website, they are engaging and can really help a organisation or business tell a story. But again just be conscious and aware of the number of videos that you host on your website.  Videos can often be very large files, so if you are using them make sure the file sizes are reduced. 


Experts agree that one of the most important things you can do is make sure that your website hosting is green.  See if your host uses renewable energy, disposes of old hardware as environmentally friendly as possible and takes part in carbon offsetting.  Cloud hosting is often more sustainable than traditional Data Centres. 

Location is key here as well, if your audience is UK based, try using hosting in the UK as the less distance the data has to travel, the less energy it uses. 

You can see if your hosting is green here: https://www.thegreenwebfoundation.org/

Our hosting providers, Razorblue, have achieved more than 90% renewable coverage for their global data centre energy consumption and have joined the EU Climate Neutral Data Centre Operator Pact, an industry initiative to commit to EU data centre carbon neutrality by 2030.

Other things I found useful, inspiring and shocking: 


Every single email has a carbon footprint, an email with a photo generates 50g of CO2.  Emails are a necessity but by being more aware we can reduce our carbon footprint, you can unsubscribe from newsletters you no longer read, be mindful of using gifs, emojis and memes and send links to documents rather than sending them as attachments. I saw a fantastic email footer on LinkedIn that really inspired me: ‘Please don’t feel the need to respond to this email if none is required, I won’t be offended. Let’s save energy.’ 

A quick Search…

How many times do you search the internet a day?  I honestly dread to think about my own search history, I use it for everything! Google uses renewable energy and carbon offsetting but there are other search engines out there who are trying to go a step further.  I have not used it but Ecosia is a Search Engine that plants a tree for every 45 searches. 


My favourite Youtube video of all time is still Cat versus Photocopier, I belly laugh every time. Watching videos online generates Carbon but we can make sure that we have switched off autoplay so that Youtube doesn’t continue to play in a browser tab that we have forgotten about and left open, generating unnecessary Carbon.

Social Media

You may be getting to the end of this post and feel thoroughly fed up, but the good news is that Social Media has one of the smallest Carbon Footprints in the Digital World. Facebook has said in their sustainability report that each person generates the same amount of CO2 per year as boiling the kettle for a brew. 
I have learnt so much this morning, an emoji produces more CO2 than plain text, falling asleep to Youtube generates CO2, popping Netflix on in the background creates Carbon.  And whilst we can’t completely change the way we use the internet, it has made me more aware.  So I really hope this blog doesn’t come across as preachy, I just found it interesting and if there was something you thought we could help with on your website please just get in touch. 

Further Reading



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