Northern Colorado Local Businesses Win with Small Business Saturday
Read how your business can benefit by taking part:
What is Small Business Saturday?
Small Business Saturday is a “shopping holiday”–a special day, like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It falls on the Saturday immediately after Thanksgiving.
That means this year the big days in (Saturday) November 28, 2015.
While Black Friday is geared for large retailers and Cyber Monday is an internet purchasing event, SBS is a day for small, local, brick and mortar businesses to get their share of the holiday action.
The first Small Business Saturday was held on Nov 27, 2010, with the concept originated by American Express (who has the trademark on the term, btw.)
#SmallBizSaturday, #smallbusinesssaturday, and #shopsmall are commonly used on social media sites to promote the day.
Why does it work?
Yes, it does work. Last year nearly $6 billion dollars was spent during Small Business Saturday.
There has definitely been a shift among many consumers to support their local businesses. There is even some backlash against the impersonal nature of shopping online. There is something to be said after all for the ability to see and touch something in person. And there are the people–that would be YOU the store owner and your employees. People like to do business with people they like.
Sure, everyone wants to get a good deal, but they also want to feel good about the experience.
Local governments are supporting the event. Let’s face it, local businesses support local governments because they pay local taxes. It is in the best interest of the entire town, village, city or county to have local dollars stay local. Most employees of local businesses live near by, at least relatively speaking. So when we buy locally we are helping out our neighbors earn paychecks as well as helping our community take care of itself.
The national GoLocal Cooperative also gives five great reasons to buy local:
Buying from locally owned businesses keeps your money circulating three times longer in the local economy.
With that money, local businesses create the majority of new jobs.
Local businesses are, by far, the best supporters of community projects and nonprofits.
Because they live here, local businesses provide the best customer service and support.
Most of all, supporting local business and products strengthens and preserves our unique community.
The day has been so successful in the US that the event has also been adopted by shopkeepers in the UK since 2013.
How can my business take part?
Team Up: Consider teaming up with another local business.
Say you own a candy shop. You might offer discount coupons so when one of your customers buys some treats they get a discount at the neighboring coffee joint, and vice versa.
Or maybe you offer a small sampling of another store’s products and they offer some of yours. So your top selling Christmas candy shows up at the local bakery and some of their specialty cookies or cupcakes are in your case as well.
Consider creating package deals. You might create a basket that has cookies and coffee, chocolates paired with a great Merlot.
At the very least you can cross-promote a compatible business–be willing to tell your customers about other shops in the area, and have sales fliers and their coupons available to hand out.
Talk It Up: promote the day, your business, and each other
Have fliers or posters up in your shop alerting customers to SBS.
Use Social Media to start generating buzz–now! And keep posting about the day. Let people know what you will be doing special for that day.
Be specific in your advertising–whether that is fliers, ads in the newspaper or online ads. Let customers and potential customers know why they should come to your store on Sat the 28th. Offering a discount? Are specific items on sale? Donating proceeds to charity? Are you having special entertainment or activities? What will you be doing on the 28th that makes it imperative people show up on that day, as opposed to any other day?
If you are holding a special event or donating some of your proceeds to a charity then be sure to do a press release. By getting the word out you have a much better chance of having more people come to your store.
Small Business Saturday image from American Express Corporation