Your Business Toolkit

Having a Post-Pandemic Store Front

Have Online Options 

  • Wix and Shopify offer "do-it-yourself" tools to run online stores and blogs - Shopify is offering free trial programs right now!
  • OSiM Interactive in Harriston is a Google Business partner and can help you navigate terms like SEO, brand value, and UX design
  • LaunchitMinto can provide social media assistance

Decorate you Store Front 

  • Check out in-town stores for window markers or make your own signs with chalkboard paint
  • Switch up displays often! If costumers can't come in to browse, at least they can window shop and purchase online!
  • Team up with your neighbours for cohesive designs! Our friends in Arthur all teamed up to paint rainbows down their main street! 
  • Here's example of a boutique in downtown Elora as well

Know Your regulations 

Having an Online Space

Have a Website 

Create Citations 

  • Citations are mentions of your business in online directories
  • We run the local directory through our membership program
  • WhiteSpark is an Albertan program that can help you locate and manage citations
  • Other common citations are Google and Facebook businesses. Sometimes they are auto-created due to your address so make sure you claim yours to keep it accurate!

Use Social Media 

  • Have business pages for common social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest
  • Your demographic may be more on Facebook so that's where you're the most active, but having a few posts on other sites creates additional, authentic links to your business which boots SEO

Use Google search Console

  • Google Search Console is a free tool ran through Google that monitors and maintains your site's search presence
  • Not only does it track your websites traffic, it can also troubleshoot indexing problems, spam issues, and mobility usage

Having a workable Space 

In An Office 

  • Have the space where you meet with clients the most easy to get to so they aren't overwhelmed or confused when entering
  • Things like photocopiers and printers should not be where noise is irritating
  • Use connected technology! Tools like Asana, Microsoft Teams, and Google Suite offer tasking tools and a way for employees to communicate no matter where they are
  • Having separate spaces for work and storage and having work areas with natural light promote a healthier workspace

At Home

  • Pick somewhere with less traffic and a window
  • Add some plant life -even if its fake
  • Declutter weekly - home offices have a habit of becoming a dumping ground for extra stuff but this can become distracting
  • Invest in some light exercise gear. We know you don't want to, but when you're feeling stiff, unmotivated, or tired some light weight-lifting or 10-minute yoga does wonders!
  • Here's an example from a community member 

In a Retail Space 

  • Optimize PoS areas; multiple employees will be using this space for multiple activities. Having equipment that twists, turns, and is easily adjustable is so helpful in these situations!
  • Set up displays that lead customers in a certain direction to help in-store traffic
  • Refresh displays often and try to cross-merchandise them
  • Find other ways to appeal to the senses such as air fresheners, candles, or light music

Having Branded Merchandise 

But why? 

  • Brand merchandise develops an authentic brand identity
  • Branded items create an emotional connection with consumers and employees
  • Can have simple options such as business or rack cards, or more extravagant options for events like t-shirts

Simple Options 

  • Business cards and rack cards are simple merchandise options that can be easily designed, printed and displayed. You can have them on your business service counter, and community spaces such as LaunchIt, or public bulletin boards.
  • Branded name tags for employees also increase brand recognition by helping customers put names and face to logos
  • Innovative is Minto's very own commercial printer!

Advanced Options 

  • Clothing like t-shirts, hoodies, and hats; as well as home wares such as mugs or pens are larger ticket items that can be used as gifts to new clients or handed out at events your business is invited to or sponsors
  • Laser Magic, Raynbow Signs, W.C Smith Wholesale, and Norsco Sports all do custom printing on items like these

Having A Spot in Minto 

Us + LaunchIt 

  • By having a membership with us, you save money with our great affinity programs! You can also make money by working with us to develop B2B relationships and networking
  • We work closely with LaunchIt as well; A place where you can get expert advice through their advisor programs and rent work spaces until you have your own!

PitchIt! 

  • PitchIt! is an annual business plan competition run by the Town of Minto, LaunchIt, and the yearly sponsors
  • Perfect for anyone looking to open, purchase, expand, or relocate their business to Minto!
  • Prizes can be customized to fit winners needs!
  • 2020 is underway - but keep your eyes peeled for 2021!

Young Professionals 

  • The Northern Wellington Young Professional Network is an initiative started to provide networking, resources, and training for professionals between the ages of 20-40
  • Getting involved means working with great people from the towns of Minto, Mapleton, and Wellington North!

Woman in Business 

  • The Woman of Wellington Saugeen Area (WOWSA) is group that empowers, inspires, and connect women in business.
  • They facilitate low-cost networking events, workshops, and seminars
  • Find them at wowsa.ca

And More...

  • There are so many ways to get involved in the Minto Community we couldn't possibly list them all in a single post!
  • town.minto.on.ca has a business tab where you can find more resources, development and investment information, and contacts for economic and other development officials
  • You can also connect with the Harriston Rising, All Aboard Palmerston, and Clifford Connects teams to learn about and help with downtown engagement
  • Click the images to check out each town