It’s November and guess what’s around the corner – Small Business Saturday! Held on the last Saturday of November every year, Small Business Saturday is an initiative by American Express to promote small local, family, and online businesses.

Let’s face it – it is an extremely competitive world and it is difficult to compete with the large-scale businesses in the industry. However, with the right opportunity, at the right time, opportunity presents itself  – Small Business Saturday is one of those times! Marking its 10th year, this annual shopping festival is strategically held right before the holiday season begins. The idea is to bring communities together and support local businesses.

What’s noteworthy? 96% of consumers, who reported shopping on Small Business Saturday, said the day makes them want to shop local all year!

Read on to know how you can make a lasting impact on your potential customers this season.

Update Your Online Presence: While posters, flyers and merchandise will keep you busy, do remember to update your online presence as well. Businesses often ignore this aspect and end up confusing their online visitors with outdated information on their website and social media profiles. To ensure your audience finds the sales, offers, and promotions accurately, drive them to the correct address, sales pages and provide up-to-date contact information.

Remember, customers look you up online, when researching deals and deciding where to shop.

Plan Incentives: Online shoppers are always on the lookout for offers and sales to get the best deals. In order to make the most out of a festive shopping bonanza like Small Business Saturday, plan incentives and promotions for your customers in advance and ensure you highlight the same information on your website for existing clients.

To encourage repeat business, plan incentives that like discounts off future purchases.

Don’t Step Down: Don’t think your product/service falls into the holiday category? You might be surprised. More and more, shoppers are looking for unique and unexpected items to gift for the holidays. You may not consider your product or service a holiday essential, but Small Business Saturday presents an opportunity to get creative with your marketing and showcase why your business is the perfect fit.

Positioning your products and services around holiday themes will boost your marketing game both online and in the local community.

Talk, Listen and Engage: Everyone loves to have the inside scoop! Involve your as much as possible in the ramp up to your promotion or sale. Start a countdown, upload pictures of your best selling products, and go LIVE, better yet – ask your followers what they would like to see during the holiday!

Moreover, don’t forget to jump on the hashtag bandwagon! Research and use the most relevant hashtags to make your brand discoverable, after all, you don’t want to miss out on popular conversations happening at the local level.

Convert into Regular Business: We have given you a few tips to make Small Business Saturday a success for you; however, it doesn’t end there!  Be forward thinking and let this be an opportunity to catapult your business to future greater success. Generate leads, engage with them online, feature a few lucky customers during the holiday and stay top of mind with your local community.

Follow these tips and keep your game plan ready to roll into the holiday season!