Introduction – Summary of Small Business Saturday

Every November, Small Business Saturday brings shoppers together to support small businesses in their communities and online. Falling right in the middle of one of the busiest shopping events of the year, this initiative gives small business owners a chance to enhance their sales before the holiday season.

What is Small Business Saturday?

American Express first debuted the concept in 2010 as a method to highlight small businesses during the recession that followed the 2008 financial crisis.

The United States Senate passed a resolution in support of Small Business Saturday in 2011, and the event has since grown in popularity with participants across all 50 states. 

Small Business Saturday is held between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, when many people are already doing their holiday shopping online or at well-known retailers. The objective of the event is to promote the value of small enterprises in local communities so that they are not overwhelmed by large corporations. 

Given how badly the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted many small business owners around the country, this could be especially significant moving forward. 

When is Small Business Saturday?

Small Business Saturday occurs every year on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. In the United States, this falls on the last Saturday in November, between the 24th and the 30th..

  • 2022 date: November 26
  • 2023 date: November 25

How to join Small Business Saturday

If you’re a small business owner who wants to participate in Small Business Saturday, American Express has several resources that can help. This includes both physical and digital marketing items, such as posters and signage that can be used in your store if you have one. 

Apart from assisting small business owners with marketing, American Express also provides special discounts and offers to businesses and individuals for the event. In addition, the company helps small business owners identify shopping trends to maximize Small Business Saturday sales opportunities.

Promoting your business during Small Business Saturday

There’s no denying that marketing plays a major role in your small business. Here are some of our top tips for promoting your business before this exciting holiday arrives.

Send out marketing emails leading up to the event

Email marketing to existing or potential consumers is a great way to promote your brand. Getting the word out about your business’s bargains, other deals in town, and other Small Business Saturday activities in your area is a wonderful way to build anticipation among your audience.

There are a plethora of templates and examples available online, many of which are downloadable. Simply add your logo, business name, and any pertinent information to send off to your customers. 

Participate in Small Business Saturday events

Finding out if other local organizations or small businesses have events scheduled is a great step to a successful Small Business Saturday. Participating small businesses, such as yours, may benefit from increased visibility as a result of these events. 

Contact your business alliance, Chamber of Commerce, and Local First organization to see if they have something scheduled for the day to get you going. If you don’t already know who they are, Google your town or county’s name plus “business alliance,” “Chamber of Commerce,” or “Local First” to see if they have a Small Business Saturday event planned. 

Promote it on social media

Social media promotion is just as important as in-store advertising. In the weeks leading up to Small Business Saturday, post a few times a week to keep your online followers informed about local activities and how they can join. 

One of the best things about social media marketing is that it’s incredibly affordable. You can post teasers, giveaways, and countdowns to get the public excited for the event!

Like and share other Small Business Saturday postings on social media to get the word out to customers all across your town. Additionally, use hashtags like #SmallBusinessSaturday and #ShopSmall to engage with the larger Small Business Saturday community.

Alert customers with flyers

You should let your frequent consumers know that you’ll be commemorating the day ahead of time. It’s a great idea to post flyers in your shop in prominent areas to make it easy for customers and passersby to see what you have coming up!

You may also want to partner with other small businesses in your neighborhood by creating a flyer that has information for both businesses. Half of the flyer can have your information, while the other side can have a list of small shops in the area that are also participating. You may download and print handy flyers or make your own with a free program like Canva. Consider supporting a local graphic design business to make the flyers for you!

Offer a special Small Business Saturday discount

Consider what promotions you’d like to provide, if any, to attract customers to your shop during Small Business Saturday.

Some options could include a “buy one, get one free” promotion, a certain percent off retail prices, or a free item or service. For example, a coffee shop could give away a free bakery item with a coffee purchase. Similarly, you might offer gift cards to customers who spend over a certain amount to entice them back after the event is over.

After you’ve decided on a deal, you should promote it and your other products to potential buyers.

Host your own event 

If there are no Small Business Saturday events being hosted in your area, you can assume responsibility by hosting an event yourself. You might begin by talking to other small business owners about what you can do to bring notice to this particular holiday in your area.

Prep your store front

Making a good first impression as a small business owner is crucial! Preparing your physical and digital spaces for Small Business Saturday is a great way to make a good first impression and encourage new customers to return. 

Begin by getting your physical store ready. If there are any repairs or cleaning that need to happen, now is the time to do it before things get too busy. You may also think about redesigning your business to make room for more customers and help promote your most popular and/or profitable items. 

Make it simple for shoppers to purchase from you. The majority of individuals now use credit cards, so make sure your company is set up to accept any type of payment. Make a secure area where your staff can help customers check out. You can also put up appropriate signage about what type of payments your business takes, if there are a limit of items for the dressing room, any information about deals, and so on! 

You should also get your website ready. Look for any new or missing information that needs updating on each page. Is this the correct phone number? Are your working hours the same as those listed? Are there any links that aren’t working? You can also use this time to evaluate the keywords you’re already using and add new ones that you’d like to be found for.

The history of Small Business Saturday 

Small Business Saturday began in 2010 as an initiative by American Express to help small businesses receive publicity and to encourage consumers to spend locally during the holiday season. The event was made official in 2011 when mayors, governors, senators, and President Barack Obama all expressed their support. By 2015, the number of people who spent their hard-earned money supporting Small Business Saturday climbed to over 95 million, with $16.2 billion in sales. Most people in the United States now know what it is, and nearly everyone who participates understands how essential the occasion is to their neighborhoods.

Why Small Business Saturday matters 

If you own a local store or cafe, this event will have a huge impact on your business. Small Business Saturday is an excellent opportunity to target your marketing efforts in your neighborhood.

Benefits of Small Business Saturday for small businesses

Small Business Saturday’s best aspect is the boost it offers to the concept of community. You can use the event to develop long-term collaborations with other small businesses, helping both of your companies reach a larger audience, improve foot traffic, and enhance sales. This could be as basic as handing out coupons or flyers for other shops in your store or a longer-term partnership with co-hosted events and special offers.

Small Business Saturday can also be used to get to know your customers better. Start sending out surveys in the weeks leading up to Small Business Saturday to get feedback on your products and services, your in-store shopping environment, your customer service procedures, and more. Make sure you pay attention to the feedback you get and strive to incorporate what your customers have to say into your business in ways that will increase satisfaction. 

Customers like having a say and a voice with the small businesses they care about, especially if it means they can contribute to the company’s long-term success by expressing their views and ideas.

FAQ 

Is Small Business Saturday a Thing?

Yes! Supporting small businesses during the holiday season is becoming more and more popular. 

How Can Small Businesses Support Small Business Saturday?

Small businesses can support the holiday by getting involved, supporting other small shops, and getting the word out to everyone they know! 

What Is the Purpose of Small Business Saturday?

The purpose of Small Business Saturday is to give the local shakers and movers in your area your support, whether that means showing up and buying items or services or just promoting their event on your social media. 

Where did Small Business Saturday Come From?

This now annual holiday was initiated by American Express as a way to highlight small businesses! 

Conclusion

Planning for a successful Small Business Saturday might be a time-consuming process, but it will be well worth it!. Regardless of the effort involved, Small Business Saturday will be a boon for your business if you participate in an event, collaborate with other small companies, prepare your business, and publicize the holiday and promotions.

If followed year-round, most of the advice in this guide, such as providing value in new ways and becoming more established in your local community, will pay off for your business. Despite the obstacles that companies are facing in this economy, your small business will be more competitive on Small Business Saturday and every other day of the year if you put in the effort and invest resources.

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