Categories: Business Tips   |  

With Small Business Saturday fast approaching, we are reminded of the importance of getting our small businesses ready for a successful holiday season. And with the ongoing pandemic, it is key to prioritize your own safety and that of your customers while providing them with the opportunity to support all the wonderful work you do.

Here are five tips to help get you started:

  1. Use the resources of the national campaign created by American Express for Shop Small Saturday

American Express created the Shop Small Saturday initiative over 10 years ago to encourage people to support small businesses by shopping from them the Saturday after Thanksgiving.

Each year they put together a series of customizable materials for both social media and print. This year they’ve included materials to inform customers about how you’re working to keep them safe and to support black-owned businesses, among others.

And be sure to use the hashtags #shopsmall #smallbusinesssaturday #sbs #shopsmallsaturday to be included in the social media buzz of the national initiative.

Check their free resources here: American Express Shop Small Resources

  1. If you haven’t done so yet, be sure to claim & update your Google My Business profile.

As you know, nowadays, people use Google all the time to find businesses near them, offering what they are looking for, and ensuring your information is up-to-date is critical.

Your Google My Business listing includes contact information, business hours, and other essential details. You can post updates to share that you’ve expanded services, temporarily closed, or fully reopened (an incredibly useful feature during emergencies like COVID-19). Google business accounts have strong local SEO, so the information you share will rank above other sites.

Misinformation can lead to bad customer experiences and missed opportunities. It can be frustrating for a customer to make a trip to your store only to find out it’s closed. Or maybe you are open, but a prospective customer chose a competitor because they weren’t sure.

You can manage your Google My Business account here: Google My Business

And it’s all free.

  1. Look into options to bring your products online.

If you don’t have a page for your business on Facebook, you should consider setting one up. It is free and relatively simple. Be sure to have some nice pictures that show your place, products, or services, have a written description of what you do and who you do it for handy, and be ready to list your website, location, and hours of operation.

Need a guide to set up your business’ Facebook page? Follow this link: Facebook Business Page

One upside of setting up a Facebook Shop is that it helps you sell on both Facebook and Instagram with an integrated store. You can showcase your products, manage a catalog, and even create collections. And it’s free to set it up; keep in mind processing payments always has a cost, which will be the case on any time of e-commerce platform, even if you build your own website.

Here’s how: Setup a Facebook Shop

If you’d rather look into setting up an e-commerce site of your own, Shopify is probably the most well-known and one of the more user-friendly ones to setup. It is a paid service, but they have a few different plans for you to consider, and they offer 9 free templates to start from.

Shopify offers its own payment processing platform, so you don’t have to worry about setting that up – however, keep in mind they charge a commission on payments collected not using their payment system. And you can start with a free trial: Shopify

Our dedicated Operations Team can help you find ways to pivot if you need someone to help you think through options to tailor what you offer. Contact us to get connected with a member of the Operations Team. 

  1. Decorate!

Whether it’s your online store or your physical location, everyone loves the appeal of a little extra flair to stand out during the holiday season. Get your employees involved, ask them what they think looks good. Everyone loves feeling part of the team and having their opinions count, and together you can create a more welcoming environment for customers and employees alike.

  1. Last but not least: Create a Holiday-Focused Marketing Campaign.

We’re programmed to LOVE holidays, especially the present buying season. Don’t be shy about it; let your target audience know that you have what they need, and since you’re a small business, you actually care about them, so you’ll do it better than the big guys.

The holidays represent an unparalleled opportunity to entice potential and current customers with special time-sensitive offers, and your ads, landing pages, and social campaigns should all emphasize the ease with which consumers can get their holiday shopping taken care of if they act right now.

Remember, we also have a team of advisors dedicated to helping you with Customer Acquisition. These advisors can guide you through marketing strategies and navigating some of the tools that can make things easier, at no cost. Contact us to get connected with a member of the Operations Team. 

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