It’s almost time for Small Business Saturday. Here’s how to make the most out of this important day for local businesses.

By Mark Gilboard | November 14, 2018

Small Business Saturday is a growing Thanksgiving Holiday tradition, and one that pays dividends to communities throughout America.

Whether you’re a shopper eager for great holiday shopping ideas, or a small retailer looking to take advantage of increased focus on keeping valuable spending dollars in your own communities, WESST wants you to know that we are always looking out for the small business community.

With the guidance of the U.S. Small Business Administration, WESST presents the following thoughts and ideas regarding the initiative called Small Business Saturday, taking place across the country, Saturday, December 3, 2019.

In a great article in the Money section of USA Today, the author lays out a simple strategy for store owners to consider in preparation for the big day:

  1. Get the word out, especially via Social Media
  2. Plan promotions, sales or events for the big day
  3. Collaborate with other businesses
  4. Evaluate staffing needs and company policies (like time off)
  5. Check inventory levels

Business help site www.smallbusinesstrends.com lays out an additional list of helpful advice for small business owners in anticipation of the big day as well – with these among the better items:

  1. Take advantage of American Express’ offer of free printable signs for the day.  Have Spanish-speaking customers?  American Express’ also offers ready-made materials in Spanish, including social, online, and physical location materials.
  2. Introduce Special Edition Products
  3. Run a “Flash Sale” announced on social media
  4. Use Small Business Saturday as the START of promotions and events, not merely a “one-off” event.

Facebook has an easy to use, “how-to” guide to running a Small Business Saturday campaign as the start to your business’s upped efforts this holiday season – check it out here.

The most extensive resource, along with a welcome PSA video from former WWE magnate, and head of the SBA, Linda McMahon, can be found here: https://www.sba.gov/about-sba/sba-initiatives/small-business-saturday.

Included in this great, well-organized section of the SBA’s website are the following items:

For shoppers

For small business owners

For partner organizations and other government agencies

  • Follow, friend, and like SBA on social media for all the latest updates on #SmallBizSat and #ShopSmall

Two other great short articles for businesspeople running Thanksgiving weekend promotions can be found here, and here – one is from Entrepreneur Magazine from a couple of years ago and still holds much sway.

Not to be outdone by the owners and business people themselves, the Better Business Bureau issued a best practices of sorts for consumers highlighting what to look for when shopping these great small retailers and businesses near and far – Their Number 7 Tip is to SHOP LOCAL, saving gas and keeping your hard earned money in your own community to help promote economic development where it matters most, in your hometowns.

For more information go to www.smallbusinesssaturday.com for more info about local promotions and retailers taking part in the amazing efforts.

As always, stay up to date on all the great offerings that WESST has for small business of all types and sign up for email notifications of events, trainings and more, at WESST.org

About the Author


Mark Gilboard

Mark Gilboard joins WESST in 2017 after 16+ years as a marketing and advertising research professional with Nielsen Media Research and Clear Channel Outdoor. He focuses on helping people achieve their entrepreneurial dreams with careful and insightful guidance and enthusiasm. Prior to embarking on his corporate career, Mark taught college courses in Media, and Communications, at both CNM and UNM. He has a Master’s Degree in Communication from UNM and Bachelor’s Degrees in both Rhetoric and Spanish from Bates College, in Lewiston, Maine. Mark believes Albuquerque is a great place to build successful businesses, and an especially great place to start and raise families. He lives in the Ridgecrest area of town with his wife Kristen and two daughters – Anneliese and Nola, plus a bevy of beasts – canine, feline and reptilian.

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