BOSS Frequently Asked Questions

Here are the most frequently asked questions about South Shore Home, Life & Style’s BOSS Awards.

What are the BOSS Awards?

The Best of the South Shore (BOSS) Awards is a program hosted by South Shore Home, Life & Style based on an annual reader survey.

When does BOSS voting take place?

The 2023 Best of the South Shore Awards is comprised of a Nomination Round and a Voting Round. The Nomination Round begins Thursday, January 12, and runs through Friday, February 2. The Voting Round begins Monday, February 13 and runs through Monday, March 6.

How does the nomination round work?

The Nomination Round will run from January 12 to February 6 at 11 p.m.. Readers nominate their favorite businesses in the appropriate categories and the more nominations a business gets, the better their chances of moving on to the Voting Round.

How many times can I nominate a business?

You may cast one nomination per category, per day, during the Nomination Round.

Do businesses have to pay to be represented on the ballot?

No! The Best of the South Shore results are 100 percent based on the public’s nominations and votes. Being an advertiser does not guarantee a win.

Are BOSS Award nominees allowed to promote on the survey?

Yes. We offer BOSS advertising packages which include ad spots on the ballot, ads in the magazine, and ads across These advertising packages give businesses more exposure, but they DO NOT guarantee anything for the contest. Reach out for more information.

Why is my nomination not showing up on the ballot?

Nominations will not be made public until the nomination period has ended. The top five nominees from each category will move on to the Voting Round and will appear on the website. In certain cases, when there isn’t enough variety in the nominations, fewer than five will advance.

How specific do I need to be when nominating?

The more specific the better! In some instances, we can’t approve a nomination unless it includes sufficient information. For example, if you’re nominating “John” for Best Bartender, please specify “John at The Tinker’s Son.” Another example: if you’re nominating a business that has more than one location on the South Shore, please specify the location.  In many instances, companies with various locations get combined when there is no clear winner between the different locations.

I missed the nomination round this year. How can I be more prepared next time?

Sign up for our emails. We’ll send you occasional emails with important BOSS information.

How does the voting round work?

The five businesses that receive the most nominations in each category advance to the Voting Round. Voting for the 2023 BOSS Awards will take place February 13 – March 6, 2023.

How many times can I vote for a business during the Voting Round?

You may vote once per day, per category.

Why don’t you have my category? 

Every year, we take a close look at the categories from the previous year’s ballot. Some categories get added based on reader feedback/suggestions. Others are dropped due to low engagement. Some categories are combined. Some are reworded for clarity. We do our best to consider the impact of these changes, but we’d like to hear from you if you have comments or suggestions. Please email those messages to [email protected]

How can I promote my business to get nominations/votes?

Click HERE for our free graphics, marketing tips, and advertising packages.

Can nominees be based outside of the South Shore?

The BOSS Awards is intended to honor amazing local businesses on the South Shore. We consider nominations for any businesses in the coastal region south of Boston to Cape Cod.

Can chain stores and franchises be nominated, or is it only for locals?

We love to see locally owned small businesses shine, however some categories just don’t have many locally owned businesses. It’s up to the voters to say what they support.

I don’t have time to fill out the whole ballot right now. Can I come back later and do more?

Yes! As long as you’ve already registered (entered your email address on the form on your first nomination or vote), you can pick up where you left off. When you return to the ballot on the same device, you should be automatically logged in and able to see your previous selections. If you aren’t logged in and you know that you’ve already registered, click the “Already entered?” link at the top of the ballot, then enter the email address you previously used.

Why do I have to make an account?

Our ballot software requires that users create an account to track your selections. This helps us guard against fraudulent voting and allows you to revisit the ballot before the deadline to make changes and additional nominations. There is no password needed!

How do I find out who the winners are?

Winners will be announced online in June and in the Summer issue of South Shore Home, Life & Style, which is available on most newsstands. Subscribe now to get the BOSS issue delivered right to your door.

Will there be an BOSS party in 2023?

Yes! Our 2022 BOSS Bash was a huge success and we are planning to have another in-person event in 2023. Details are TBD. Subscribe to our newsletters and follow us on Facebook and Instagram for updates.

Which honorees will be featured in the BOSS Summer Issue?

All BOSS winners and 1 runner-up for every category will be listed in the Summer 2023 issue as well as additional Editor’s Picks. 

When will finalists and winners be notified?

We do our best to notify finalists in early February (typically by email) prior to the voting round. We begin to notify winners in late March. We ask winners to keep their good news a secret until the winners are announced publicly (in June). Be sure to be on our email list so we have some contact information about you.

Why wasn’t I notified that I was a finalist or a winner?

With hundreds of categories and thousands of contenders, it’s a challenge to maintain an up-to-date list of contact information. If the nomination and/or voting round has ended and we haven’t contacted you yet, email us and we’ll let you know if you’ve been named a finalist or a winner. If you know your status, feel free to send us your best contact name, email address, mailing address, and phone numbers to inf[email protected] so we can keep you in the loop.