‘Tis the season…for shopping hell.” Yes, that’s what the period between Thanksgiving and Christmas is referred to, and for good reason. Between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the shopping frenzy isn’t a joke: Holiday sales represent up to 30% of annual retail sales each year. As a small business, it’s important to capitalize on all of the sales holidays, not just the major ones. Let’s go over a few lesser-known sales holidays and how to profit from each. 

Small Business Saturday

Calling all independent businesses: This holiday is for you. Held on the last Saturday of November, Small Business Saturday (or Shop Small Saturday), is a counterpart to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Instead of focusing on big box retail and e-commerce stores, this holiday shines a spotlight on small and local brick and mortar businesses. 

While it started as a small undertaking by American Express, Small Business Saturday has now become a full-fledged contender with the rest of the shopping holidays. In 2018, US consumers reported spending a record high of an estimated $17.8 billion at independent retailers. 

Don’t miss out on joining the movement — prepare your business for this day with the following tips

  • Announce your participation. Let your customers and prospects around your community know you have special things planned for this day. Use social media marketing, email outreach, and even flyers — anything you can to get the word out there. This is especially important for your prospects: A whopping 96% of consumers who’ve shopped on Small Business Saturday said the day makes them want to Shop Small all year long. This could be an excellent opportunity to gain a fan.
  • Cross-promote with other businesses. The essence of this holiday is to bring communities together. Reach out to other small businesses and build a partnership that could be profitable for both parties. For instance, you can offer a discount to anyone who presents a receipt from your partner store, and they can do the same for you.
  • Make it special. Whether it’s sprucing up your store with streamers and balloons, or redesigning your website to honor this day, it’s essential to let your customers know that they’re apart of the celebration.

Sofa Sunday

Yup, Sofa Sunday is a real thing, and no, it’s not a day where sofas go for crazy low prices. It’s the day before Cyber Monday when you get to curl up with your jammies and search for deals.

Why is this day important for your business? Because it’s essential to develop your holiday strategies on time — two-thirds of shoppers will spend more time researching deals on Sofa Sunday than actually shopping on Cyber Monday. It’s a great time to make a positive final impression with shoppers before the big day. 

With so much attention focused on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, many retailers may overlook Sofa Sunday – an influential shopping day,” said Curtis Tingle, SVP of Product, Valassis.

With that in mind, take a look at your marketing metrics and figure out what’s been performing best. For example, if a particular product has been receiving the most engagement, you can make it the star of your homepage.

Boxing Day

You might think that with Christmas being over, so are the sales (and you can finally rest). But, believe it or not, Boxing Day (the day after Christmas) is one of the most popular days to shop during the holidays. While it’s a bigger event in Canada and the UK, it’s still worth taking advantage of.

Here are a few suggestions on how:

  • Use your Christmas campaign traffic. Hype people up with messaging that emphasizes how the holidays may be over, but the sales aren’t.
  • Make a splash on social media. People are enjoying their Christmas presents and plastering them all over social media, which makes it the perfect time to boost visibility. Ask your followers to post pictures of your products with a hashtag, or run a contest with discounts as prizes.
  • Deck out your website. Some brands are business as usual, even on select holidays. Make sure that when people visit your site, they know they’re in for a good time on Boxing Day. 

Small Holidays, Big Profits

So which holiday is right for your business? The answer is, all of them. As a small business, it’s crucial to take advantage of whatever holidays you can. Just remember that the key, as with most retail, is to make sure that your target audience is aware of when your sale is and that your sale is enticing enough to get customers to purchase. This means having a good idea of who your ideal customer is, knowing how to reach them, and having the marketing budget to get your message out effectively.

Did you know that you could influence your marketing strategy through books on film? Read more here. 

Angie Tran
Author