The problem your project solves
99% of European companies are SMEs which generate ¾ of private sector employment. COVID-19 threatens the survival of many of them.
People have had to change their way of shopping and ecommerce has experienced a great growth. However, many companies, especially SMEs, whose main business was physical sales, need to enter the digital world or improve their Internet presence.
And we have seen how sustainable products and services are the preferred way forward.
The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, claimed that it is time to react decisively and boldly by building a resilient, green and digital Europe.
And the MEPs voted by overwhelming majority for fresh fiscal efforts to tackle Coronavirus, where The European Green Deal and the digital transformation should be “at its core” in order to kick-start the economy.
On the other hand, the sustainably thinking companies, are finding specific challenges to demonstrate to people that what they are selling are not Greenwashing products.
The solution you bring to the table (including technical details, architecture, tools used)
www.ClicKoala.com is currently the first search engine that only finds products with eco-social seals validated by sustainability experts from 25 European universities, such as Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, IE University, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona, University of Jaén or Universidad Politécnica de Valencia.
In the same way that we asked the experts, this time we have asked the Spanish SMEs: How can we help you with the challenge of COVID-19?
They have answered that they need to adapt, find new business models and information about the present and future of the world of sustainability, its market and the conscious consumer. This often means looking for new sales channels, mainly online.
Now the solution we propose is the "ClicKoala's sustainable small business wizard" tool. It means that any company that arrives at ClicKoala will find a quick diagnosis of its situation and find solutions that will help it in its sustainable digital transformation, starting from one of the 3 stages in which it can currently find itself:
- You are a company that does not have sustainable products or services, but you are interested in knowing more about sustainability. In this case, with a couple of clicks you can know which eco-social certificates are the ones that experts value the most and are adapted to the characteristics of the company. We also give you access to more information and contacts about these certificates.
- You have sustainable products or services, but do not sell them online. In this case, we help you to set up your online shop in 48 hours, and if you want, you can register your products in our search engine, so that you can be found immediately by conscious consumers.
- You have sustainable products or services and you sell them online. In this case you can register in one minute any of your products or services that have a certificate guaranteed by the experts.
SMEs find in ClicKoala much more than a trusted place to register their sustainable products and services so that our users can find out about them. They also find information about the sustainability sector or guides to improve their web positioning or their communication on Social Networks.
We have solutions for everyone; both a free plan and plans based on an annual SAAS model at affordable prices that SMEs can undertake. ClicKoala is a credible place for “real sustainable products” and their overall promotion, which helps these companies. The more sustainable products, the better the choice for the customers.
Any profit is reinvested in the project for improvement.
In its most technical aspect, it is a mobile friendly web application in PHP, with a front-end in Bootstrap and jQuery that shows the ratings of our experts based on a series of variables entered by users.
What you have done during the weekend
During this weekend we have built from scratch the tool "ClicKoala's sustainable small business wizard". It is based on the surveys we did to Spanishs’ SMEs just prior to the start of the hackathon. This tool provides a quick diagnosis to any SME to help it in its sustainable digital transformation, based on the situation it finds itself in, as we have explained in the previous point.
This tool connects in a simple way with our ClicKoala search engine and its platform to register sustainable products and services, as well as extensive business intelligence. It completes in a simple way all the Journey that a struggling small business may need to get an answer to their needs.
The solution’s impact to the crisis
We help any SME become part of that new resilient, green, digital Europe by connecting small businesses with conscious consumers who use our search engine.
As mentioned in “Reflection paper towards a sustainable Europe by 2030”, in the EU environmental economic sectors are growing faster than the overall economy and "Green growth would ‘lift all the boats", benefitting producers and consumers alike.
It is estimated that achieving the SDGs in the areas of food, agriculture, energy, materials, cities, and health and well-being could open more than EUR 10 trillion of market opportunities.
According to the association of crafts and SMEs in Europe, SMEunited, SMEs are key to sustainability, but it is necessary to remove all obstacles for SMEs to go from linear to circular business models:
“Traditional SMEs require a set of measures, such as information, technical assistance and upskilling of their workforce."
In addition to increasing the visibility of these SMEs in a different search engine, where users want to find products like theirs, we provide them with reports, market studies and guides tailored to their characteristics, to help them adapt.
On the other hand, our users, in each of their searches, receive fundamental information about each product, such as what their eco-social certificates are for or which ones are of proximity. Information that allows them to make conscious purchasing decisions and buy according to their values and preferences.
The necessities in order to continue the project
- EU support to ClicKoala´s project would help to make our proposal known. This way more SMEs could quickly benefit from having an alternative channel and helping tool to overcome the situation caused by covid-19.
- We need to increase the number of experts to more European universities. The will verify and qualify the eco-social certificates present on products and services that claim to be sustainable in their different countries.
- Implement continuous studies at European level on market, online communication and the conscious consumer.
- We need to develop the platform for fast digitisation of sustainable SMEs.
- Develop links between certifiers and SMEs that want to have certified products.
- Develop a network connecting suppliers and customers within our sustainable SMEs.
The value of your solution(s) after the crisis
Our solution provides an answer and fits into the new environment that European businesses will find after confinement. We are talking about around 25 million SMEs across Europe.
We carry out actions that help to achieve the objectives of the European Green Deal such as promoting a sustainable industry, cleaner energy sources or a more sustainable food chain.
Always in a scientific and rigorous way, empowering small businesses and consumers.
ClicKoala. The Sustainable Search Engine that Connects Science, Companies and People.
Clickoala´s team: Xavi - Data scientist // Almu - Finance //Toni - Marketing // Santi - Developer // Carlos - Business Development