6 Ways to Prepare for Small Business Saturday
How to succeed on one of the busiest shopping days of the year
The holiday shopping season is upon us, and if you run a small business, you’ve most likely got your sights set on November 28—Small Business Saturday. Though 2020 is sure to bring about a much different shopping experience than years past, it’s not too late to stand out and succeed.
In 2010, American Express launched a shopper’s holiday called Small Business Saturday, sandwiched between Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Small Business Saturday is geared toward educating consumers on the importance of supporting small businesses and encouraging them to spend their dollars locally. As a small business owner, you can’t afford to miss out on this strong marketing opportunity.
In 2020, Small Business Saturday is November 28. Last year was a record year for the event, generating an estimated $19.6 billion in reported spending.
All types of small businesses—retail, salons, boutiques, restaurants and local nonprofits—are encouraged to participate in Small Business Saturday. Many towns and cities make the day a community event by promoting one another to their customers. It’s a small business marketing strategy that just makes sense.
Whether you are a new business or just new to Small Business Saturday, there are some steps you can take now to maximize your results this year:
1. Create valuable partnerships
Chances are, you are not the only local business looking to make the most out of Small Business Saturday. Create partnerships with other local companies to turn shopping into a community event that nobody wants to miss. Meet with businesses close by or businesses that have the same customers as you do to create a plan on how you can work together. Share advertising costs, create multi-store specials for customers and advertise in each other’s stores are just a few ideas.
2. Generate a buzz on social media
There’s nothing wrong with print advertising or signs in your store windows, but don’t forget about your online audience. Use social media to help spread the word. Create a Facebook event page for the day where you post who is participating, what their sales are, and any other special offers. Event pages are easily shared by users and you can get a gauge on the number of consumers interested. In addition, look for other local pages with a large following—the local newspaper or community forums—and submit the information for them to share.
3. Focus on the customer
Customers need to be the focus of your daily business strategy. It is crucial that you review the current customer experience to make sure each part delivers a memorable feeling. Creating a positive experience turns your holiday customers into long-term loyal customers.
4. Decide on the deals
Know what you are offering before Small Business Saturday and tell your community. They are more likely to show up if you give them specific saving expectations than if you just say, “Come for the deals!”
5. Evaluate your website
Does your website get customers in the holiday shopping spirit? If it’s filled with content about your summer specials or past events, it’s time for a facelift. Update your content with information on your sale, holiday gift ideas, and why customers should shop with you this season. To increase your local consumer traffic, make sure you have a mobile-friendly website. Mobile-optimized websites make it easier for consumers in the area to see you on their device and get directions to your location.
6. Don’t be afraid of paid advertising
Paid advertising on social media platforms or search engines helps spread the word quickly. The best part is you can target ads to be delivered to those in your local community or even those within miles of your location.
Make the most of the holiday shopping season by gearing up for Small Business Saturday with these six tips. The more you prepare, the better your results will be on November 28.