Small Business Saturday can be a boon for the well-prepared entrepreneur, or a bust or stressful rush for business owners caught off guard. Here are some of our top tips to help you make the most out of Small Business Saturday on November 26:
Many shoppers may want to visit your establishment, but your operating hours could prevent them from stopping by on Small Business Saturday. To make the most of this yearly event, the U.S. Small Business Administration suggests extending your hours for the occasion. Also, consider keeping a closer eye on your business email, so you can promptly answer any inquiries your online customers may have.
Brief your employees
Success on Small Business Saturday is a team effort. To help the day run smoothly for your staff and customers alike, make sure your employees understand the importance of the event. Show appreciation to your workers, and encourage them to greet patrons and be courteous with customers. Since this may be the first impression you make on many customers, it helps for all hands on deck to be polite and friendly. You may just win over a customer for life.
Events and incentives
Customers love a good deal and a fun shopping experience. Offer discounts, giveaways, or other incentives for shoppers. To drum up interest in your products and services, consider setting up demonstrations or giving out samples. You may even be able to team up with other small businesses to create an eye-catching event that will attract a variety of clients.
Spread the word
Help your customers plan their visit to your shop. Social media campaigns are a quick, easy, and low-cost way to catch your customers’ attention. Connie Certusi, a contributor to Entrepreneur, suggests using the #SmallBizSat or #ShopSmall hashtags on Twitter and Instagram to help shoppers find your business. Don’t forget to throw in any local hashtags or slogans to reel in nearby customers. You can also attract foot traffic by putting up signs, making a radio ad, or placing an ad in your local paper.
Update your online presence
Make sure your online presence is updated and ready to be seen by shoppers. For instance, check to make sure your return policies are up to date, your contact information is clearly visible, your site’s payment-processing features are secure, and your store hours are clearly posted. Certusi says you should ensure your website is optimized for shoppers on mobile devices as well, so every customer can enjoy a smooth transaction.
Preparing for success will help your Small Business Saturday be a productive day for your company. Once the day is over, reflect back on what worked, what didn’t, and try to identify what could be done better. Through attentive management and practice, you’re sure to make every subsequent Small Business Saturday even more of a success.