Saturday, Nov. 24 is Small Business Saturday, falling between Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Readers may have seen this advertised on television or heard it on the radio. It is a day to celebrate and support the small businesses in our community, owned by family, friends and neighbors.
Small businesses are the wheels that keep our economy rolling, responsible for 65 percent of new job creation and 44 percent of the United States private payroll. Shopping these local businesses helps keeps our communities strong and our economy going and growing.
Small Business Saturday was created by American Express and sponsored by the Small Business Administration.
Both American Express and the SBA have free resources on web sites to help both the customer and business owner. Utilizing the website, located at www.sba.gov/saturday, businesses can sign up to be a part of this event. The website allows the businesses to link their webpages as well as be linked via a search engine be and be located.
The SBA site also has resources and helpful tips for the small business owners to assist them in marketing their business during the Holiday Season. Tips include ways to maximize your return on sponsoring or hosting Holiday events; Holiday marketing on a limited budget and things to know when hiring temporary workers.
The www.shopsmall.com site also has a spot to sign up or find participants. The site has free online banners and logos to use to promote your business on blog, website or anywhere else online.
The site also has email and social media templates to help drive traffic with preloaded posts, blog examples, tweets and emails. The site also allows users to get two professionally printed banners through the local Fed Ex Office to use in business windows.
According to Forbes magazine, 100 million-plus customers shopped local last year on Small Business Saturday. This resulted in an increase in 5.6 percent of revenue due to the shop local initiative over doing nothing else.
Get involved and be a part of the people who support local business and help kick off the holiday season by shopping local. Business owners check out the free resources and see how they can help attract customers. And to all, the best.
Anyone interested in learning more can find related articles and resources at www.missouribusiness.net or by contacting their local University of Missouri Extension office and asking to speak with the Business Development Specialist.