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5 Ways Small Businesses Can Make a Difference This Christmas Season

By: Maria Werner-- 2015-12-11 1:00 pm --

Business and charity go hand in hand, with the average small business donating 6 percent of their earnings to charity. Charitable donations provide businesses with the opportunity to make a positive impact in the lives of others, while building a favorable reputation for their company. This year, make giving central to the philosophy of your small business. There are a variety of easy and low-cost tactics to boost your charitable influence and strengthen your community.

  1. Organize an employee volunteer day. Volunteer shifts are often only two to four hours long, so you needn’t take the entire day off of work. Volunteering will provide your staff with new skills and experiences, while breaking up the monotony of the day. It will also demonstrate your company’s commitment to the community by helping a local nonprofit in need.
  2. Offer charitable promotions. A charitable promotion will attract more customers and increase sales, all for the good of charity. By offering to donate 5 percent of sales to a local charity, you can significantly increase the number of patrons to your store, while raising ample funds for the causes that matter most. Alternately, you can offer to donate crucial supplies, like toiletries and socks, every time a person purchases a set quantity of goods. For instance, for every $50 spent in your store, you’ll donate a pair of socks to the local homeless shelter. With wholesale prices on a variety of bulk goods, it will be of little expense to your business, while incentivizing consumer spending and making a profound impact in the community.
  3. Sell products that make a difference. Consider adding product lines from charitable companies. TOMS donates a pair of glasses or shoes for every pair purchased, while Newman’s Own donates all of their profits to charity. Incorporating these products into your store will maximize your philanthropic potential.
  4. Set out donation canisters. Pick a local charity to raise money for, and set out a donation tin alongside each register. When people are paying with cash, ask them if they would like to donate their miscellaneous change to charity. Most people dislike being weighed down by heavy coins and will be eager to unburden their pockets, while helping those in need. Loose change adds up quickly and can make a world of difference for nonprofit organizations.
  5. Hang a community bulletin board. By hanging a community bulletin board, you can make a difference in the lives of everyone who walks through your doors. It provides a place where people can look for job openings, find a roommate, post flyers for their lost pet, advertise for local events or fundraisers, and more. Community bulletin boards can create a sense of cohesion and togetherness, allowing people to become more involved in their neighborhoods.

While about 75 percent of small businesses give to charity, many low-revenue businesses lack the superfluous funds to give back. Fortunately, there are a variety of cost-effective ways to make a difference in the community, so businesses of all sizes can partake in holiday giving and make a difference in the lives of others. By incorporating charitable causes into the philosophy of your business, you can engage your community in a more meaningful way, while inspiring new customers to patronize your store.