Small Business Saturday: Everyone wins

If you own a small business, give yourself a pat on the back for giving back to your local community.  And get ready for Small Business Saturday, a shopping holiday that will take place on November 24.

Small Business Saturday was created by American Express in 2010 to support small businesses nationwide by encouraging people to patronize local brick and mortar stores. It occurs on the Saturday after Thanksgiving as an alternative to Black Friday (big-box retailers) and Cyber Monday (e-commerce stores).  Last year, more than 100 hundred million people came together to Shop Small® in their communities on Small Business Saturday.

No matter what your business, you deserve a day that acknowledges and celebrates your contributions to the economy, job growth and your community. Consider these facts:

  • For every $100 spent at locally owned independent stores, $68 returns to the community through taxes, payroll and other expenditures. If you spend that at a national chain, only $43 stays in the community. Spend it online and the community gets zilch.
  • If half the employed population nationwide spent $50 each month in locally owned independent businesses it would generate more than $42.6 billion in revenues.
  • Entrepreneur  notes small businesses employ half of all private-sector employees.
  • A recent Bloomberg News story reported new businesses account for the biggest share of job gains.

We all want our local communities to thrive. No matter what kind of business you own, you can help make Small Business Saturday a success. Even if you don’t own a shop, you can encourage your employees and customers to participate.

Here are some tips for retailers and other small businesses to get ready for the big day.

  •  ‘Like’ the official Small Business Saturday Facebook page. This also has information about participating in special contests hosted for small businesses.
  • Take advantage of free marketing materials, which include personalized in-store 11” x 17” printed signs, online banners and logos, and templates for posts, blogs, tweets and emails to drive traffic to your small business. The Small Business Saturday Toolkit also offers tutorials for improving your online marketing.
  • Let customers know they can register their American Express cards to shop at small businesses to receive a $25 credit.
  •  Promote your Small Business Saturday special offers on your company’s social media sites. Also, the Twitter hashtag #SmallBizSat can be used to promote small businesses on any Saturday (not solely that Saturday between Black Friday and Cyber Monday).

Remember, a rising tide of revenues will help lift all small businesses in your community. Shop locally on November 24!

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