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Small Business? Big Ideas on How to Beat the Competition

Small Business? Big Ideas on How to Beat the Competition
The holidays are an important time to keep your customers and employees safe. / Credit: Holiday shopper image via Shutterstock

With competition as fierce as ever for shoppers, small businesses are always looking for ways to set themselves apart from big box retailers.

To help continue the momentum many businesses gained on Small Business Saturday, hibu, a provider of digital marketing solutions for small businesses, offers tips on how local business owners can maximize their profits this holiday season. Their advice includes:

  • Avoid the "loss leader" approach adopted by big box retailers: Promoting big-ticket single items can be costly for small businesses. Instead, recommend customers choose a few unique items as a package, and create an offer around that.
  • Stock up on inventory: Businesses need to make sure their inventory is sufficient. When people come to their store or online site, they expect to be able to buy what they're looking for. Don't let them down by not having the items readily available to purchase.
  • Online shoppers: For those with an online site, be sure to give customers an excellent e-commerce experience. Things like free shipping over a certain amount and in-store pickup can make a big difference.
  • Social media: Use social channels to promote deals, and encourage customers to share them with others.
  • Strategic SEO: Ensure keywords are set up well in advance to help ensure search engines have time to index and find your products and services.
  • Mobile-friendly: Business owners should look at their site on their own mobile phone. Make sure the website is optimized to take advantage of "drive by" traffic.
  • Be creative: Try to think creatively about how to get the word out in the local community. Holiday events and local newspapers can help drive customers to your store.

Originally published on BusinessNewsDaily.

Chad Brooks

Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based writer who has nearly 15 years' experience in the media business. A graduate of Indiana University, he spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago, covering a wide array of topics including, local and state government, crime, the legal system and education. Following his years at the newspaper Chad worked in public relations, helping promote small businesses throughout the U.S. Follow him on Twitter.