How to rock Small Business Saturday WITHOUT having discounts!

How to rock Small Business Saturday WITHOUT having discounts!

Why do brick-and-mortar retailers think they need to discount and have big sales to get people in the door?

It’s simply not true.

We work hard for our margins. Discounting them 10%, 20% or more is not good for the bottom line and then we’re training our customers to look for sales.

I’m not a believer in discounts.

There I said it.

I see my retail clients having amazing events – without the big sales and discounts!

At my creative stores, we very rarely put our products on sale, and on Small Business Saturday retailers’ first instinct is to run a big sale.

You can still make a splash, attract customers, and have a great sales day without discounting your products.

Sales don’t mean anything if we don’t have a profit at the end of the day.

Specials or featured items can work if needed, but consider adding VALUE vs SALES

Did you know, small business Saturday is the highest sales day for many of my retail coaching clients?

Read that again. The highest sales day of the year, so do not miss out!

How to Promote Shop Small Saturday

Try some of the following (mostly) FREE strategies to have a successful Small Business Saturday:

1) Be grateful.  Remember people are coming to you to support small businesses, you don’t need door crasher specials and try to compete with big-box stores.  Be sure to acknowledge in person and online your gratitude.

2) Build up excitement for the day. Plan your social media, show behind the scenes, do FB lives, IG stories around the store, and introduce your staff. Make a fuss, and let people know about you, your values, your store’s personality, and vibe, people buy from people they know, like, and trust. Be that person they think about when they decide to shop small business.

3) Have a door prize (maybe a workshop) and maybe a hot cider pot, free coffee, cookies, etc. You don’t need to go crazy, but people will love the gesture.

4) Feature other small businesses in your area. (I like to make it places I know my customers also frequent.) Show people YOU shop and support local and introduce your customers to other local small businesses. Be sure to tag those businesses in your posts.

5) Use social media hashtags unique to your neighborhood or business area – people will find you with them.

6) Go on FB LIVE the day before and then several times early in the day.

7) Ask customers to take selfies of themselves at your store, and share a hashtag for a chance to win, this will get their friends interested too and customers LOVE it.  Also, encourage them to do location check-ins on FB and IG.

8) Have featured items in-store, do free demonstrations, showcase some of your DIY products, and highlight some special items customers are always asking about. Make it an event.

9) Invite other vendors, makers, etc to come to your shop for the day to sell, or demo their products and “meet the makers”. This works especially well if you already sell the artisan’s work in the store.

10) Collaborate with other small businesses in your neighborhood, the local deli, or bakery or wine store, or neighboring store. Have a contest, a scavenger hunt, or draw if they visit 4 of the 8, etc. Get creative with your fellow small businesses.

Add value – with experiences and fun, you can do a gift with a purchase or a door prize, but you don’t need to discount all your product.

The key is to remember people WANT to shop small businesses and have an experience. Your job is to build excitement and let them know you are there and that you appreciate them visiting. Make Small Business Saturday an experience.

 Separate yourself from the chaos and impersonal Black Friday shopping at the big box stores – stand out!

Take your brick in mortar to the next level next year!

If you’re ready to put the pedal to the metal for next year for your brick and mortar… you have to put on your CEO hat and learn the foundations of business to make your store profitable. You have to do the work.

If you want some help amplifying your retail business. Check out my instant access course – Retail Made Simple. It’s an on-demand course you can do at your own pace. Learn more HERE.

Bonus! Here are a few hashtags you can use to promote your shop’s Small Saturday event

In addition to your area’s hashtags: #shopsmall #shoplocal #smallbusiness #smallbiz #businessowner #smallbusinessowner #smallbusinessweek #smallbusinesssaturday #smallbusinessowners #smallbusinesslove #smallbizowner #smallbizlife #creativeentrepreneur #smallbizsat #lovelocal #momandpop

And a few other shopping hashtags to try #creativebiz #creativeshop #creativestudio #shopoholics #shoppingday #retailtherapy #retail #store #shopping


Catch my Biz Tip lives on FB @

What do you do on Small Business Saturday to ensure a successful sales day? Let me know, I’d love to hear from you, and here’s to a fabulous Small Business Saturday for your store!

Xo, Wendy

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Retail coach Wendy Batten shares best practices for your best Small Business Saturday



How to choose the best paint brand for your brick and mortar

How to choose the best paint brand for your brick and mortar

There are so many things to consider when choosing products to sell in your store.

Take time to consider some of the following before jumping into a decision.

As a business coach for paint and creative retailers, I work daily with paint retailers from multiple paint lines and I have the pleasure of working with a couple of them as a consultant.

I speak with new paint retailers daily and have gathered a list of considerations for choosing a paint line for your brick and mortar or booth space.

You must LOVE it. Period.

Without a doubt, you have to love the product to sell it. Hands down my #1 piece of advice.

If you have any products in your store you don’t love, stand behind and use yourself (or in your store) your customers will see through that and will not buy.

Try before you buy

This connects with my tip from above. You have to love the paint you are selling; how can you love it if you have not tried it?  It boggles my mind when retailers tell me “well I didn’t use it yet”. Try it, get starter kits, buy from another retailer, but use it before you make any further decisions.

Start-Up Costs

Most companies have a minimum order to get started. Be sure to ask.


Know the wholesale price and SRP, check the margins, look at shipping costs and be sure to ask if you can set your own price up or down. Some companies have strict policies. Be sure the numbers work.

know your numbers when choosing a paint brand to carry in your brick and mortar


Many lines have contractual items you may not be aware of, some things to ask/consider: Do they require a minimum sales amounts to keep your contract? Are there other expectations from the company?  Some companies dictate number of workshops you must have, and/or require you to have certain marketing logo etc on your website and social media. Are you allowed to carry other paint lines or are their restrictions? How long is the contract? Know before you get too excited.


How is shipping calculated, shipping can make or break your margins. KNOW THE NUMBERS.

shipping costs can make or break your margins - know your numbers when choosing a paint brand to carry in your brick and mortar


What is the minimum reorder amount if any?


Is training offered? Is there a cost? Is support offered when issues arise?


Is there a protected territory? What is the radius or way this handled? This is an important factor to consider. Be sure you are clear on this point.

protect your sales territory with your paint brands


Online sales?

If you plan to sell online, do your research, some companies have separate contracts for online retailers. If this is a key part of your business model, be sure to know if you can sell online.

Consider selling your paint brands online, be sure you check with your paint brands prior to signing a contract


Does the paint line have a support system for retailers, a private FB group or access to easy answers, etc. Can you call anytime and get answers?


Do they have a strong social media presence? Have a peek at their FB page, website and IG accounts. Are they promoting their retailers? Are social media accounts active and engaging?


Contact current retailers and ask them how they like carrying the product, does the brand have a good reputation? Does the owner have a good reputation? This is important as your customers will know too.

Does the paint brand you are considering for your brick and mortar have a good reputation

Can you speak to someone before becoming a retailer?

Is there a real live human you can speak to before making the decision, they should be vetting you as much as you vet them.

Do they have an application process or do they accept anyone?

This may or may not be important to you, but consider companies that accept anyone anywhere. If you want a stable, quality product, they should be picky about who sells it, if not, it will be available everywhere by everyone, this, in my experience, equals tons of bad advice and poor results for customers. Consider this point if you are not asked any questions about your business.


Look at the options available to you, and think of what is important to you, and be sure to try and use and like the product you choose.

I know it’s a lot, but knowing the questions to ask and things to look for will help you make that decision. It’s a big investment. Some of the above may or may not be important to you, that’s ok.

What Paint Lines are out there? And how do you start selling paint?

I work with retailers from several paint lines, if you are looking for information on how to bring a paint line into your store, I have an easy reference for you. Click here to see my reference list of all the specialty paint lines you could work with and learn where to apply to be a retailer. I don’t vouch for these companies, but they will give you a great place to start using my advice from above!

In full disclosure, I work with Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint and consult with The FAT Paint Company, and carry others, however, the list includes these two and several more that my coaching clients currently carry. 

Now…it’s time to get more paint sales in your shop!

If you’ve picked your paint lines and you’re ready to get paint sales, wouldn’t it be great if you could ask the industry leaders how to best sell your paint? Well, here’s your chance. I have gathered all the best paint selling advice from the industry’s top leaders in my Creative Retailers Sales SucCess Guide here!!!  These tips will help store owners maximize paint marketing!

Xo, Wendy

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I’d love it if you shared my pin below on Pinterest! Find me on Pinterest @FrontPorchMercantile for more Creative inspiration and Creative Biz Tips for your brick and mortar store.

How to choose the best paint to sell in your brick and mortar store with Wendy Batten












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