7 Ways to Prepare Your Business for Small Business Saturday
These actionable tips will help you make the most out of Small Business Saturday and help you foster brand awareness.
Nov 14, 2022
Thanksgiving weekend has become an extremely competitive time for retail businesses. Business owners must prepare for Black Friday and Cyber Monday and since 2010, the Saturday after Thanksgiving has been dubbed Small Business Saturday.
This day encourages shoppers to support local businesses and all they do for their communities. Created by American Express and co-sponsored by SBA, this day is a great opportunities for small business owners to spread the word about their products and services and interact with their local customers.
As of last year, 51 million shoppers participated in Small Business Saturday. Consumers find that small businesses have a positive effect on their communities. Therefore, it’s no wonder more than half of Americans say they will shop small on Small Business Saturday.
But how can your business make the most of Small Business Saturday? Below, we’re offering helpful tips on how you can make sure you’re ready for the spike in store and website traffic and that you’re fully taking advantage of the opportunity to capture new customers.
1. Define Your Brand
As a small business owner, you are probably working on crafting the brand image that merges your values with what your customers need. Since Small Business Saturday is a great chance to showcase your brand, ensure that it is easily identifiable amongst the myriad of businesses around and even similar competitors.
To better define your brand, focus on your company mission, voice, colors, and target audience. Your company mission should reflect the values your business champions as well as how you plan to make a difference in your community.
Your business voice and aesthetic should be consistent across channels. Whether in your physical store, website, or social media accounts, ensure that customers have a cohesive experience.
Brand consistency can increase ROI. Therefore, consider reviewing how your different channels align with your mission, chosen colors, and voice, so that your customers can quickly identify the spirit of your business.
If you don’t have the resources to revamp your online presence or physical marketing materials, consider working with marketing agencies or a managed marketing service provider to assist in the development of new branding materials for all of your printed materials, signage, and digital assets.
A website is often the first digital touchpoint customers will have with your business. Therefore, having one that is easy to navigate and provides the value users are looking for can take your business to the next level.
To create a better website, consider investing time and resources into the user experience and (UX) and user interface (UI).
UI refers to your website architecture, buttons, and other visual elements users interact with. UX is the user, or customer experience, and it focuses on how the user journeys across your website.
Watch this helpful explainer below to better understand UI and UX:
In simple terms, UX would be like designing your physical store. Where are the doors and how do the different parts of the store connect with each other? Is there an easy way for the customer to find what they are looking for?
UI would be the actual furniture in your store, the decoration, and the design of your product. Both of these facets of a website come together to provide your customer with a clear experience so they can focus on your business instead of how to navigate around it.
3. Use Small Business Saturday Memes to Engage with your Audience
Since small businesses will be trending on social media during Small Business Saturday, this is a great opportunity to showcase your brand with great graphics, quotes, and memes.
Memes are a great way to connect to your audience with humor and a more personal touch. In fact, memes have ten times more reach than regular marketing graphics.
These images you use should be consistent with your brand throughout channels. What defines your business voice? Is it the friendly neighbor ready to help any customer? Or perhaps an innovating brand that takes on any challenge?
Here are some Small Business Saturday memes and quotes to inspire you.
The graphics above showcase Small Business Saturday quotes to inspire you and your customers to continue building a sense of community that is often fostered in a small business. Below, we have gathered a few Small Business Saturday memes that you can share or use for inspiration to create your own.
Use these memes on your social media pages, emails, or website, or create your own so that you can drive more traffic to your channels during Small Business Saturday.
Branding your posts and memes will help you stand out in the myriad forms of content on social media. Consider adding your company logo on your posts while keeping the meme or image as the main focus. You can also feature some of your products or brand differentiators your customers can recognize.
4. Collect Client Information
It’s possible that participating in Small Business Saturday (SBS) will attract some first-timers into your location or onto your website. Consider setting up a promotion to gather customer information for future communications.
Maybe it’s 15% off purchase now, 50% off your next purchase, or a free sample, but creating a campaign where users have to sign up for your email list to get a promotion can help you gather more leads.
Tweak the promotion to make sense for your business, but the key is to collect that customer information.
By collecting customer information, you have the opportunity to reap the benefits of SBS long into the future by setting yourself up for more marketing opportunities.
These leads you generate don’t even have to make a purchase to connect with your business. When they fill out the form for a coupon, downloadable content, or newsletter, they automatically share their email address with you. You can then use it to foster communication and nurture your new leads into becoming new customers.
Cybercriminals often take advantage of big shopping days such as Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Small Business Saturday to launch cyberattacks on small businesses. It may seem that most attacks target big enterprises, yet in actuality, small businesses are the victims of most attacks.
You can do a lot to prevent threats in two ways. Using multifactor-authentication (MFA) and training your workforce to spot phishing attempts.
Use Multifactor-Authentication (MFA)
What is multi-factor authentication? See our explainer video below!
As the name suggest, a phishing attempt is an email, text, or online message crafted in order to coax the recipient to click a certain link, download malicious files, reveal credentials, submit payments, or another activity that can jeopardize your business.
It may sound daunting, but this type of scam does have some red flags users should be aware of. These include:
A sense of urgency, e.g., “Last chance to receive your payment!”
An illegitimate email address, e.g., [email protected] (notice the double Ms and Ps as well as the addition of “shopp” to the url)
Grammar or spelling errors
Suspicious links (hover the cursor over them to see where they lead)
Seemingly random attachments
Staying alert to these warnings and training your staff on them will reduce risks associated with phishing scams. Use the two tools above to improve your cybersecurity during Small Business Saturday.
Companies with ecommerce platforms need software to support their programs to ensure that the customer experience runs smoothly. Utilize analytics to draw on historical trends from prior years and better prepare for staffing, inventory and transaction volumes.
Evaluate data from your order and inventory systems and any ecommerce data for competitive analysis, user experiences and business processes. Analytics can empower a team to make better business decisions from product choices, workplace solutions to targeted messaging online and offline.
Technology can also help you personalize your customers’ experience. Using a customer relationship management platform (CRM) allows you to use data to improve the customer experience. CRM can help you deliver a unique experience to each consumer as well as automate interactions so that your brand is always a click or a call away.
For an email strategy to work, it needs to provide value to the reader. That value can be entertainment, education, or inspiration.
If you are a business that sells beauty products for instance, a blog where users can learn about foods that contribute to skin health or daily practices to prevent skin problems would give valuable insights to your visitors as well as gather an audience around your brand.
A CRM platform, mentioned above, can also give you more control over how you implement your email strategy, how often you send emails, and how you respond to customers.
Small Business Saturday creates a great opportunity for small business owners everywhere to engage with their customers and grow their audience. Using the tips above will help you revamp your online presence and continue to grow your business.
If you want to focus on your website, learn more about creating a quality site that engages users and generates more leads by downloading our eBook What Makes a Quality Website?