Save a Small Business This Holiday Season
It’s officially Small Business Season, meaning it’s time to give a little love to small businesses. Small businesses feel the crunch with rising interest rates, soaring costs, and online competition. So this season, do a little extra for your neighbors and make a concerted effort to shop small. If you do, you could be saving a small business this year.
How to Save Small Business Without a Lot of MoneyBesides being job generators, small businesses flavor our towns. They attract tourists and bring money from other communities into our own. A quaint Main Street and shopping district attracts a lot of people. If we don’t support small businesses this year, we could lose those businesses and the attraction factor for additional spending.
Yet not everyone has money to spend this holiday season. According to GOBankingRates, over 1/3 of people surveyed plan to forgo tipping their service providers or providing them with a Christmas bonus. Instead, people are looking for ways to save, and many are coming up short. Still, there are many ideas for keeping a small business that won’t cost you anything.
- Write reviews of your favorites on a variety of sites. Reviews influence buying decisions from Facebook to Google, industry-specific sites to local spots. Writing a review is free.
- Tag friends when you see something they would like on social media. When a small business shares something you like on social media, tag a friend. Not only will your friend see the post, but all their friends will also (permission settings allowing, of course).
- Check-in at businesses. Even if you’re not buying, when you check in at a company, provide social proof that you are visiting this business. It creates a crowd mentality that the place is worth checking out. Ever decide not to eat at a restaurant because there are no cars in the parking lot? Checking in helps create a (virtual) crowded lot, which drives people to check the business out.
- Share images from the business. Take pictures. Share details about your experience. Photograph their calendar of events. Share anything that would draw people in. When you’re not directly affiliated with a business, and you share, people see that as an endorsement, and they’re more likely to act.
- Join their newsletter or mailing list. Now may not be an excellent time to buy, but joining their mailing list and forwarding helpful information to your audience can help match a buyer with a needed product or service.
- Answer questions. If you see a question about a product or service in a group, give some suggestions. These referrals are hot leads for your favorite small business because they know the person asking is already in the market for what they sell or do.
- Post a round-up on social media. Create a list of your favorite businesses, restaurants, or service providers, post a daily “thankful for the small business post” and feature a new local business daily. Write a “best new businesses” post for businesses that opened this year. Get creative and tag the company whenever possible.
You can do a lot to support small businesses without spending anything. Giving them your time and promoting them to your audience can drive buyers to patronize them. For the most significant impact, ensure that everything you post is visible to the public and encourage people to share your posts. Your efforts might just be saving a small business this season.