Making the Most of Small Business Saturday®

October 22, 2020
Average Read Time: 3 minutes

The stakes are always high for the retail industry during the end-of-year holiday shopping extravaganza. With the pandemic devastating brick-and-mortar traffic, and an upsurge in online shopping squeezing inventory and delivery times, a successful holiday season for retailers is more important than ever, particularly for the small, local store.

To support small businesses, MerchantE is a proud supporter of Small Business Saturday®, founded by American Express in 2010 to help bring more customers to local shops. As is traditional, it’s scheduled for the Saturday immediately after Thanksgiving -- November 28 this year – sandwiched between two other critical shopping days, Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Shop Small® is more than just the act of shopping at small businesses. It has become a holiday shopping tradition that celebrates a greater nationwide movement dedicated to uniting communities and supporting all kinds of small businesses. It’s fueled by individual shoppers, business owners and organizers who encourage consumers to shop with small business all year long because they know it matters to business owners and the communities they serve.

A recent report says that nearly half of Americans are planning to shop more online than in-store for the upcoming holiday season. Take a look at our most recent blog to find out how to prepare your online store for the holiday shopping season and beyond.

Getting Ready for the Big Day

According to the 2019 Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey, U.S. shoppers who shopped at independent retailers and restaurants on Small Business Saturday reported spending a record high total of an estimated $19.6 billion[1]. The number of consumers who participated also increased, as an estimated 110 million shoppers positively impacted communities by choosing to Shop Small on the day in 2019[2].

With those results, you don’t want your business left behind. Here’s how you can participate:

  1. Make sure your physical and virtual stores are in order. With the pandemic affecting in-store sales, more shoppers are expected to go online for a digital Small Business Saturday.
     
  2. Check inventory and invest in more where necessary.
     
  3. Determine deals to offer customers.
     
  4. Double-check health and safety practices in your store: masks, social distancing, store shopper limits, plexiglass and walking paths. Make sure they are clearly spelled out in signage where necessary.
     
  5. Market your participation via email, blogs, social media and signage. Use the hashtag #ShopSmall whenever posting about the day.
     
  6. Visit American Express to learn more about safe shopping insights and discover tools and savings to help encourage your customers to Shop Small with you all season long.

MerchantE Can Help

In addition, you might want to consider expanding your shopping and payment methods to make holiday buying easier for customers and improve your cash flow. MerchantE’s Business Essentials, an all-in-one package to fuel business growth, can help you think outside the box in making it easier for customers to continue to shop safely and securely.

  • Start a website, or improve the one you have, with WebCommerce. It’s simple, it’s fast, and it will help you showcase your products and sell them anywhere your customers might be – on Facebook, Instagram and Amazon – with built-in shipping options and curbside pickup.
  • Mobile acceptance turns a mobile device into a terminal that can accept payment anywhere – get creative about meeting your customers curbside or take it to outside markets.
  • Hosted payments provide customers a more safe and secure way to pay online, eliminating human intervention.
  • Finally, our reporting feature offers insights into all your transaction data for more effective cash management.

Supporting Shop Small and participating in Small Business Saturday can help you build brand awareness and ramp up sales, on the day (November 28) and throughout the holiday shopping season. We know that small businesses are integral to the communities they serve and this holiday season they need our support now more than ever. This is why we are a supporter of Shop Small and Small Business Saturday, and that’s why we hope you participate as well.

Start preparing for Small Business Saturday® with our all-in-one Business Essentials bundle.

Learn More

[1] The 2019 Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey was conducted by Teneo on behalf of American Express and the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB). The study is a nationally representative sample of 2,287 U.S. adults 18 years of age or older. The sample was collected using an email invitation and an online survey. The study gathered self-reported data and does not reflect actual receipts or sales. It was conducted anonymously on December 1, 2019. The survey has an overall margin of error of +/- 2.0%, at the 95% level of confidence. Projections are based on the current U.S. Census estimates of the U.S. adult population, age 18 years and over.

[2] The 2019 Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey was conducted by Teneo on behalf of American Express and the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB). The study is a nationally representative sample of 2,287 U.S. adults 18 years of age or older. The sample was collected using an email invitation and an online survey. The study gathered self-reported data and does not reflect actual receipts or sales. It was conducted anonymously on December 1, 2019. The survey has an overall margin of error of +/- 2.0%, at the 95% level of confidence. Projections are based on the current U.S. Census estimates of the U.S. adult population, age 18 years and over.

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