Posted by Charles Dortch on Wed, Sep 19, 2012 @ 10:00 AM
Small Business Saturday is an initiative created by the United States Senate in 2011 to increase consumer awareness of the impact their shopping choices can make in their local communities. Held the day after Black Friday, in which big-box and nationwide-chain retailers hold huge sales to kick off the Christmas shopping season -- often at the expense of local small businesses -- this year's Small Business Saturday falls on November 24, 2012.
The importance of small, locally owned businesses to the U.S. economy is enormous; small businesses account for more than half of the country's $11.7 trillion gross domestic product (GDP). Highlighting the diverse range of business services offered by locally owned and operated companies while promoting their often superior approaches to customer service, Small Business Saturday helps local businesses compete and prosper.
Participation in the initiative benefits both consumers and businesses. On the consumer end, American Express offers generous incentives to customers who choose to support local businesses. On the merchant end, Small Business Saturday affords unique and effective opportunities to advertise, promote products and services, and market to new bases of potential customers. Facebook supports the initiative, and on the dedicated Facebook page, small business owners can register their store, promote their sales and download and print signage for use in the offline world.
There are many reasons to support local businesses. In addition to helping your community, you also help small businesses continue their community programs and charitable initiatives, which are generally more significant from a proportional standpoint than those undertaken by their chain-store competitors. Small businesses also tend to offer superior, personalized customer service and enhanced product differentiation. What's more, small businesses are key sources of job creation, helping keep your local economy strong while having a decreased impact on the environment
For more information on Small Business Saturday, please visit the following websites:
• Yahoo! Small Business Advisor. Learn more about the initiative and browse links to niche information.
• ShopSmall. Go into more detail on how locally owned businesses benefit both individual consumers and the communities in which they live.
• Stores. Find detailed information on the advantages of participating in the venture from a merchant's perspective.
At CrossCheck, we strongly support small businesses, offering a wide range of helpful resources to assist local merchants in their efforts to remain competitive and profitable. We've created The Check Guarantee Insider's Guide to Competitive Advantage, a free download which explains check services you can use to provide your customers with payment options and personalized service at your small business.