5 Tips to Prepare for Small Business Saturday
Each year in November, consumers around the country look forward to a holiday called “Black Friday,” aka the biggest shopping day of the year. Regardless of the weather, people will start lining up outside their favorite stores as early as Thanksgiving night, in order to get the best deals on items like big-screen televisions or the hottest toy for their child. While Black Friday shopping has become a tradition for many, there are still a number of consumers out there who prefer to stay away from the chaos and shop local.
If you’re a small business owner, you may or may not be aware of Small Business Saturday. This day got its start back in 2010 via the credit card company American Express and is meant to remind customers that they play a key role in the success of the small businesses within their communities. In this article, we’re sharing some tips on how to prep your small business for a successful Small Business Saturday and holiday season.
- Get Your Finances in Order
As a small business owner, it’s likely you dedicate most of your time to ensure your business is running smoothly. Working long hours, possibly even by yourself, leaving you with little time for errands such as running to the bank. If you haven’t already done so, now is the time to consider moving over to a digital bank. This type of banking caters to small businesses and offers features like mobile check deposits, leaving you with more time to spend making sure things are running smoothly with your business rather than having to worry about adhering to banking hours. Getting ahead of this before Shop Small Saturday will put you in a position for success with your finances on this day and throughout the year.
- Stay on Top of Your Social Media Accounts
If your business is on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or even Pinterest, the weeks leading up to Shop Small Saturday provides the perfect time to really ramp things up. It’s important that you create a posting schedule for yourself as you will want to post as often as possible. Utilizing hashtags like #ShopSmallSaturday or #SmallBizSaturday is an effective way to spread the word and help shoppers find you easier. These posts are also a great opportunity to showcase top-selling items as well as a sneak preview of items you’ll be featuring on the day of. You may even want to consider borrowing a page from the big business book by including a “doorbuster” deal. It works wonderfully for larger businesses so there’s no reason it can’t work for you and your small business!
Bonus Tip: Another great way to keep your customers in the loop is to remain active on your business’s blog. Blogging builds brand awareness, develops relationships with new customers and strengthens your relationships with existing ones. If you’re unfamiliar with blogging, click here to learn more!
- Recruit Extra Staff
With all the extra traffic you’ll be experiencing during SBS, you’ll want all hands on deck. If you’re a one man or woman operation, it will be worth it to hire on some temporary employees or recruit family and friends to volunteer. Bulking up on employees will allow you to remain organized leaving you with more time to mingle with customers. If you are the sole operator of your business and don’t plan to employ additional help but need some assistance with clerical work, look into hiring a virtual assistant, whether temporary or permanent.
- Support Other Local Businesses
Teaming up with other nearby local businesses is an effective way to not only gain extra reinforcement, but also pool your resources. For example, if customers purchase shoes from your store, let them know the shop next door is featuring socks at a discounted rate. By incorporating this tactic into your SBS, you’re giving back to another business in the community while simultaneously increasing sales for your own.
- Create a Positive Customer Experience
At the end of the day, Small Business Saturday, or your daily business for that matter, would not be possible without your customers. Creating a positive experience for them should be a top priority as you want them to return and spread the word about your business. According to this article by Forbes, there are a few non-negotiables when it comes to providing your customers with a positive experience. Something as simple as offering your customers refreshments while they shop, or a free gift with each purchase can truly make the customer experience unique and special. Working hard to meet these expectations on SBS, and the days to follow, come with the great reward of higher revenue, customer retentionn, and referral rates.
Small Business Saturday is a great opportunity for your business to shine. Following these steps will help you better prepare and ensure you’re ready to face this occasion as well as the rest of the holiday season.