The great thing about birthdays is that everyone has one — customers, businesses and even pets.  And everyone enjoys a little extra attention on their special day, no matter what their age. We offer our customer rewards program shoppers a wrapped gift on their birthday, and it is surprising how many stop in to get… Read More

Customers — we couldn’t be in business without them!  Especially in these challenging economic times, it’s important to let all our customers know how much we appreciate the fact that they have chosen to patronize a locally owned store.  We know they have lots of other options, from shopping online, going to a big box… Read More

Do you accept debit cards as a form of payment, and offer a device  to customers so that they can input their PIN codes? When you signed a contract with your credit card processing company or bank, this undoubtedly included a per-swipe fee for this type of debit card use.  The national average for this… Read More

The best way to encourage customers to “like” you on Facebook is to offer entertaining and engaging content that motivates them to want to be on the inside circle for your business. In an adaptation of the 70/20/10 rules for learning and management, SnapRetail suggests that 70% of the content on your Facebook page be… Read More

Looking for a way to bring shoppers into to all of the stores in your tourist area, neighborhood or Buy Local district?  Consider this charm bracelet promotion adapted from the quilting stores of Nebraska. The idea is that shoppers buy a charm bracelet for a nominal amount (such as $10), and then they receive a… Read More

“Diversifying is a good way to play it safe.”  “It doesn’t matter what you want, it only matters what your customers want.” “There’s no such thing as a safe bet.” These are three of my favorite entries in the 53 Ways to Become a Better Entrepreneur list that serial business-owner Neil Patel posted in a… Read More

The predictions of a paperless society appear to have been premature — most of us have desks and filing cabinets overflowing with invoices, tax forms, bank statements, receipts, advertising tear sheets and more.  The sheer bulk of all this paper can easily begin to overwhelm the space allotted, and make it difficult to find what… Read More

“Buy American” is a wonderful goal, but chances are good that a very high percentage of the items in your shop are made in China.  Any changes in the availability and pricing of Chinese-made merchandise could have a big impact on what you are able to offer to your customers, and thus to the viability… Read More

Every small business owner needs a trusted mentor from time to time to help face the challenges posed by today’s economy — but it isn’t always easy to know where to find one.  If you haven’t checked out SCORE, you should definitely see if this organization can give you the assistance you need. They have… Read More

Time is sometimes as precious as money to today’s shoppers.  A high school friend recently posted this on Facebook: “At retail stores and the supermarket, why not have an express line based on time and not the number of items…..? PLEASE let me leave with my 5 items in 60 seconds. No checks, no ’20… Read More