||Annual revenue from the gift, novelty, and souvenir store industry amounts to $13 billion across approximately 30,000 locations in the United States alone (Gift and Souvenir Stores, Industry Profile June 2008). Yet, this is but one small segment of the retail business that stems from travel and tourism. The U.S. Travel Association estimates that domestic travelers spend nearly $50 billion a year on retail purchases during their trips.
When it comes to retail businesses, the trend of Corporate Social Responsibility best translates to the Triple Bottom Line: People. Planet. Profits. Businesses, by their very nature, can leave a large footprint on the environment and on the planet. Yet, business can also be a catalyst for change. For example, in a search for company-wide savings, Wal-Mart focused on compact fluorescent bulbs. Realizing significant savings, in both energy and money, Wal-Mart began a crusade to change the world, one light at a time. The company's consumer eco-friendly practice, begun in saving money and then moving to educate consumers, has now spread the creation of a packaging rating system designed to reduce waste 5 percent by 2013.
Retail businesses should evaluate their supply chain, packaging supplies, building standards, recycling, light/energy consumption, waste, and how they may impact the local economy.