Are you a small business looking to boost sales during the Christmas shopping period? Have you heard about Small Business Saturday? If you don’t already know, Small Business Saturday is a campaign that is committed to encouraging customers to shop locally and support local trade in the UK. It is held on the first Saturday of December. Last year, spending with small businesses rose by 24% to a figure of £623 million, compared to the previous year.
If you are a small business owner, this is an opportunity not to be missed. The way customers shop and interact with the high street has changed drastically over the last decade. It’s no longer the case of ‘build it and they will come’. Modern businesses need to be engaging potential customers both offline and online to capture attention, loyalty and sales.
There are three digital points that you can tick off your list just in time for Small Business Saturday so that you’re making the most of the day.
Do you have a website for your business? And if so, is it optimised for mobile?
If the answer is no to either of these questions then this is something to rectify right away. Your customers are expecting to find you online and to access your website on a number of different devices. In the UK alone, 89% of the population is an Internet user, creating a huge opportunity to reach and connect with those you may not otherwise have done. Customers either want to view your products and services, find out a little bit more about your business, or buy from your e-commerce website. If you do not have a website, you run the risk of losing out to your competitors.
Having a website means your business is visible 24/7 for existing and potential customers to view. If you do currently have a website but it’s not been changed for quite a while, you should think about redesigning it for numerous reasons. Firstly, it needs to look appealing and be easy-to-use. If it is not, they may look elsewhere. Secondly, considering that now over a half of all website traffic comes from mobiles, it is essential that your website looks great on any device.
If you want to get your website up and running in time for Small Business Saturday then we can help. If you haven’t seen, we offer a pay monthly website service that can get you online easily and affordably. Whether it’s to help you get found on the high street or to sell directly we’ve got you covered. Find out more about how we can get you online here.
If you do have a website and are wondering where you could improve then we’ve got just the tool for you. Our Website Grader will give you a free report with tips on where you can improve your web presence. Give it a try today.
Social media sites – such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are essential to finding new customers these days. Seventy-four percent of adults use social networking sites to give you an idea of the opportunity. That is a huge amount of people your business could be connecting with.
It can be tempting to try and be present on every single network you can find. Whilst we recommend taking the time out to secure your brand name on different networks – it’s normally best to focus on a handful to build a following on.
For a B2C business it might best to focus your efforts on Facebook, Instagram and Youtube as you’re able to share your story in a much more visual and engaging way. For B2B business you might look to Twitter and LinkedIn to reach your target audience. Pick your battles and focus on where your customers spend their time online.
A quick tip is to use a service like Buffer. You can connect your various social media accounts together and post from one easy place.
Once setup on social media you’ll need to keep your feeds full with interesting content. Sharing content you’ve created will drive traffic to your website, which could then lead to an online sale or a visit in person. If you don’t have time to constantly be producing content then you can share from other online sources. The key is to share content that will interest and help your target audience. Have a voice and mix in some personality – you’ll soon be building an online following.
Engaging with your customers through social media also offers a great way to enhance customer service. This means happy, loyal customers that will be more likely to return and convert from a browser into a buyer.
If you want to get your social media profiles professionally designed and setup for Small Business Saturday then we recommend you check out our dedicated service for that here.
Whilst Small Business Saturday is only around the corner you still have time to get your blog going if you haven’t already. Having a blog and updating it regularly is a great way to attract and engage potential customers. It’s also an effective way to give a boost to your SEO which will help more people find you on search engines like Google.
When thinking about blogging we have a simple framework that we like to follow. It’s called PEDL.
- Plan – plan your schedule of content. What are you going to write about and how often?
- Execute – build a content creating habit. Make sure you’re setting aside time to craft.
- Distribute – make sure you share online and encourage people to share.
- Learn – Check your analytics. Find out what content is engaging and converting.
Wondering what to write about? You can easily use services like Buzzsumo to see what content is providing popular on other sites.
If you don’t already have a blog then make sure to talk to us about our pay monthly website service. We can get you a new website, with a blog, up and running in no time.
That’s just a quick roundup of some of the key areas that you can be covering whilst looking to get your business digitally fit for Small Business Saturday. What plans do you have for the 3rd December? Let us know on Twitter, we’d love to hear about it!