Prepping your store for Small Business Saturday is one of the most essential aspects of hosting a successful shopping event for your store. From the planning stages to the day of the event, follow these simple steps to make sure your day runs smoothly.
- Get Signed Up! Starting early is the first key to success. Having ample time to get your marketing materials together and promoting your business is essential to running a smooth event. First things first, you need to sign up with American Express to receive the latest information regarding Small Business Saturday. Next, American Express offers their small businesses the opportunity to create customized marketing materials for social media, websites, and storefronts. To customize your marketing materials with your logo, click here.
- What promotions are you offering? While discounts are not necessary, offering a discount or promotion is a great way to drive customers through your door and encourage transactions rather than browsing. The discount or promotion should only be offered on this day to provide a timeline and sense of urgency for your customers. Once you have decided what you are comfortable offering, add it in to your marketing materials and start sharing! Promote your event through all social networks, websites, in-store advertising, and word-of-mouth.
- Consider Partnerships A major step to a great marketing plan is to include partnerships. Small Business Saturday focuses on small businesses as well as shopping local. Look to other small businesses in your area that are also participating that cater to a similar, if not the same demographic, and create a partnership. Share one another’s social media posts and consider offering complementary discounts, such as an additional 5% off for shopping with a partner business. This will drive even more new customers; some that may have not even planned to visit your store, and provide an extra layer of word-of-mouth marketing for your store.
- Will you extend your hours? Before the day of the event arrives, there are still a few more things that you need to take care of! Some stores have found that extending their normal business hours on this day can bring great success. By extending hours, you are allowing even longer for customers to visit your store and make a purchase, increasing profit for this day. A flash sale during the extended time frame is also a great technique for driving even more traffic during the irregular hours.
- Make sure you have enough staff. Make sure that you have enough staff that will be available to work on this day. It is important to either add an extra employee to each shift for this day or consider adding a swing shift that comes in for your high traffic times, such as noon to 5:00pm. If you do not have enough help for this day, consider hiring a few additional employees to help out for the holiday season. Remember, it is better to have more employees available to assist your customers than none at all. Customer service is the key to returning customers.
- Don’t forget the final touches! Last but not least, don’t forget to make sure that your store is spick and span for the day of the event. You will be getting a lot of new customers and first impressions are key. Make sure to clean all glass for fingerprints, dust off your wood displays, and steam your merchandise for exquisite presentation. These simple steps are easy to skip over but go a long way with both new and returning customers.