photo of the inside of a clothing store with the title of the blog post; How to profit from Black Friday and Small Business Saturday: and still provide your customers with a memorable experience.

How to profit from Black Friday & Small Business Saturday

Every year I get this question from my retail accounts: What should I do for Black Friday? Or, what do other retailers do for Black Friday? So today’s blog is all about how to profit from Black Friday and Small Business Saturday: and still provide your customer with a memorable experience.

Black Friday marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season. But in recent years, it’s become a day of major markdowns and deals. For large retailers, it’s an opportunity to move old merchandise or overstock at deep discounts. But independent boutiques don’t need to move large quantities of merchandise and usually don’t have the margin to spare, because they don’t receive the same discounts that large retailers get.

In addition to Black Friday, the weekend after Thanksgiving now includes Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday. Many independent retailers have made the decision to focus more on Small Business Saturday (SBS) than Black Friday, or to only offer discounts on Black Friday, but not on SBS. And now, with more and more independent retailers launching and growing their web businesses, they can now capitalize on both Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping. For the purpose of this article, let’s focus on in-store promotions. Here are several ideas for Black Friday and Small Business Saturday that have been successful. 

Black Friday Deals



DO NOT DISCOUNT THE WHOLE STORE. Instead, offer creative discounts to move your old merch or to move a specific category. One example is a BOGO. Buy one item at regular price, and get the second item, from your specific selection, at xx% off. This way, you’re selling both regular and discounted items, keeping your overall margin higher.

Small Business Saturday


Donation drive:

Many retailers use this day to give back. Toys for Tots for retailers who sell toys or other items for kids have been very successful with this drive. 

You could also donate a specific dollar amount in cash or products, based on the transaction total. For example: a customer spends $50, and you donate $10 in money or products. If they spend $100, you donate $20; and if they spend $200, you donate $50.


Another fun idea is to enter each purchaser that day into a drawing for a gift card. 


Sometimes your vendors will participate in your GWP. It never hurts to ask! You can also offer a different value gift at various dollar purchase levels.

Turn it into a party:

Make SBS an Ugly Sweater Party or Funny Holiday Hat Party.

Cocoa and Cookies:

Offering festive refreshments is a lovely way to make your customers feel special and get them in a festive mood.

And, don’t forget, this is a great time of year to add to your email list! Capture emails during transactions, as well as a physical sign-up form. Did you already get my free checklist of 15 Email Topics to Build a Loyal and Profitable Email List? Grab it here.

 Whatever you decide to do, promote the heck out of it on your social media and most importantly through email. This is the time of year to email more often than you usually do to stay top of mind. Your customers are looking forward to spending time in your shop this season and might need a little reminder.

Have you tried any of these suggestions? Or do you have your own tried and true Black Friday and SBS traditions? Please share them below!