January 29, 2019
It’s no news that pop-ups are in – and with good reason. Along with digital native-friendly trends like dropshipping and on-demand manufacturing, these small, temporary stores give brands an accessible, temporary, and above all flexible way to get their products out into the world.
With good planning and follow-through, opening a pop-up can save costs, help your company sell more, and give your target audience a chance to test-drive your products – a win-win for you and your customers. So how is it done? Below, we’ve broken down everything you need to know about opening a pop-up shop.
Opening a pop-up can be a boost for a wide range of merchants, from apparel brands to artists and musicians, from small or new businesses to large, more established companies. Getting your product into the hands of consumers with a physical presence has numerous promotional and financial benefits.
If any of the following goals are on your list for 2019, you might be ready to open a pop-up shop.
Today’s consumers stay loyal to brands that give them an experience to remember, whether that means a personalized purchasing process or a branded unboxing experience. With a well-designed pop-up shop, you can get up close and personal with new and loyal customers.
Pop-ups can be a personal, interactive way to introduce a product, line, or brand to the public. You can stage product demos, let customers try on apparel or talk to the experts on your team, and overall establish your brand as part of a community.
Opening a pop-up should be a capital-e Event: the perfect opportunity to get bloggers, the press, and users themselves talking about your brand and what it represents. Whether you’re selling merchandise, a complicated new gadget, or custom apparel, a pop-up can be your brand or product’s buzz-worthy debut. Any content you or your customers create around the event can lead to lasting brand presence even after you’ve broken down your pop-up.
Of course, this won’t happen by itself. We’ll touch on how to market your pop-up later in this blog.
Because a pop-up is small and temporary, you can save on rent and other expenses associated with a larger, more permanent retail store. You can also reduce costs by producing smaller batches of product, allowing you to test markets before investing in a larger inventory. This saves you money both upfront and down the line by ensuring you actually sell what you produce. Plus, a pop-up adds a physical channel to your e-commerce presence, helping you sell more products overall.
One way to double down on savings and product quality is by pairing your pop-up with on-demand manufacturing. Learn more about how you can reduce risk and costs with on-demand manufacturing with The/Studio.
Opening a pop-up shop is relatively accessible compared with a traditional retail store, but there are some major considerations you’ll need to make beforehand. To get the most out of your pop-up, you’ll need to plan carefully and promote thoughtfully.
The first two (and most crucial) steps of planning your pop-up are (1) designing your store and (2) picking a location. Your store design will probably be a lot simpler than a traditional retail store due to its size – particularly when it comes to layout – but you’ll still want to think about your branding, product, and target audience when considering how your store will look and operate.
You’ll also want to choose your location wisely. This means not only doing research to find out where you’re most likely to attract the customers you want, but also considering accessibility. If customers can’t find your pop-up, or can’t easily park when they get there, you’ll have a hard time selling to them.
Finally, nail down your logistics. How will you accept payment? Who will set up, how, and when? Will you be incorporating special offers, discounts, or freebies, and how will they work? The devil is in the details, so you’ll want to smooth those out before opening day.
The worst thing you can do for your pop-up is expect it to market itself. Utilize all your marketing channels – the press, blogs, social media, email lists, influencers, and user-generated content – to make sure new and loyal customers know when and where your pop-up will be. Provide as many details as possible about how to find your store and what customers can expect from the experience.
Don’t just rely on marketing before your event, either. Whether you’ll be open for a day or a month, the pop-up itself is a great promotional opportunity. Marketing beforehand attracts customers to the event – but once things are in full swing and you’ve got customers lined up to try out your products, make sure to get on social media with pictures and videos of the event. The buzz you generate there can lead to greater brand presence once you’ve closed up shop.
No matter the size or presence of your brand, stocking your pop-up with products manufactured on-demand reduces costs, speeds up production and delivery, and gives you greater control over your inventory. Learn more about our on-demand manufacturing service – including deep design and customization – today.