Popup Shop Tips: A Focus On Aesthetics
Welcome to another Boss Talk blog post! If you clicked on this, that means you're probably expecting to read about how to make your popup shop display look good. Right? Well, you have come to the right place!
Springtime and summertime are peak periods for popup shops and vendor markets. I have participated in several popup shop events and under the Pop of Culture brand, I have organized several popup shops in various cities. One thing I always pay attention to is how small businesses brand themselves at a popup shop event. Why? Because it is so important! Popup shops serve as an opportunity for potential customers to experience the essence of your brand and be "wowed". First impressions matter and a great way to impress your audience is by putting some thought and effort into the aesthetics of your display.
Read on to learn some useful tips, do's and don'ts , where you can buy some hardware & props, and fun DIY projects.
1. RETHINK The 6x3
If you've participated in a popup shop or marketplace, you're most likely familiar with the 6x3 rectangular table that you and other business owners use to display products. It's sturdy, easy to setup, and big enough to display most or all your products. Therefore, it is the default option. BUT I am challenging you to think beyond the 6x3 rectangular table and let your creativity run free.
If you're a clothing brand, most or all your clothes should be hung on racks. Invest in clothing racks and allow shoppers to sift through your selection. Depending on your budget and desired aesthetic, there are various types of clothing racks you can invest in. Furthermore, if you're using racks, you don't also need a long 6x3 table. Instead, you can use a small side table that has enough space for your business cards, email list, and maybe a bowl of sweets/mints.
If you sell candles, skin/haircare products, bags, or shoes, you should experiment with different types of shelving. You can buy a shelving unit that is easy to assemble from IKEA, Target, Walmart, or any other hardware/decor store. You can also start a DIY project and make cool display shelves out of planks of wood, old ladders, and more. Old crates and pallets work wonderfully as well.
If you sell food, your best bet is to stick with the 6x3 because you need a flat and long surface to lay out your dishes. But you can and should add dimension to your setup, which we will talk about next.
See below pictures of the different kinds of racks and shelving you can use, as well as where you can find them.
2. Dimension, Dimension, Dimension!
One of the best things you can do to attract customers is add dimension to your display! What does it mean to add dimension? It means to add any kind of length, breadth, depth, or height to your setup. This is important because anything at eye-level or above is more likely to catch the attention of shoppers passing by than something that is at waist level or below. When you create dimension, you're telling shoppers where to look and if you play around with varying dimensions, you can create a visual trail that draws shoppers in.
One of the easiest ways to create dimension is to use shelving (as aforementioned). But if you are going to use a flat table, then you should invest in hardware to put on top of the table that will create dimension.
If you sell jewelry, shoes, bags, or hats, using stands and racks will help your products stand out. You can also use torso mannequins, glass/plastic cases, and mini/tabletop shelving.
For those of you who sell clothing or skin/hair care products, you can use tabletop shelving, torso mannequins, and small to medium sized crates.
If you sell desserts, you can use tiered stands, cake stands, and crates.
See below some pictures that may give you ideas for your next display, as well as links to buy some items.
3. Product presentation
Once you've decided what hardware you'll use for your display, it is time to think about how you will display your products. Here are a couple of simple, but highly effective tips:
-Do not overwhelm or underwhelm. Your display should be fully stocked with your products so that it does not look bare. A bare display can make it seem like you don't have much to offer. At the same time, do not overstock your display to the point that customers are easily knocking items over, feeling overwhelmed, or not knowing where to look first.
-Display your products using a repetition design scheme. This means displaying similar or same items together. Repetition brings a sense of consistency, cohesiveness, and grabs the attention of shoppers.
Example: If you're hanging clothes on a rack or folding them on a table, then you should group the same clothes together and make sure you have at least 2-3 pieces of each items hanging or folded. In the picture below, they arranged the t-shirts by color and hung 3-4 shirts per color in order to achieve repetition.
Example: If you're selling handmade soaps, most likely they come in different colors and shapes. You should display each color or shape and be sure to repeat within those separate colors or shapes.
4. Create A Mini Experience Within Your Space
When shoppers come to your display area, they should feel like they're experiencing your brand. Your setup should look and feel welcoming, exciting and cohesive. The best way to create this experience is to plan your display ahead of time. Once you know how much space you have at the popup shop (i.e. 10x10, 10x6, etc.) , plan how you will use every sq. ft to make your brand stand out. Here are some tips on how to create a mini experience:
1. Use a color scheme - Creating a color scheme can help your display look more cohesive and professional. The color scheme you choose can be based on your logo or the main colors of your products.
2. Use Backdrops/Walls - A great way to add dimension and ambience to your display is by using backdrops and free-standing walls. They help isolate your space and will make the shopper feel like they're entering your "store". You can build your own backdrop/wall if you're feeling crafty or purchase them online.
3. Use Mannequins- If you sell clothes, using mannequins is a great way to display your products and draw attention. People are more likely to purchase clothing when they see what it looks like on a body form. These days, mannequins come in various sizes and colors, therefore, it is not hard to find some that fit your taste. Mannequins can be pricey, but they are a good investment because they will last you a long time.
4. Use Props/Accents - Adding props and accents to your display can help tie everything together. Faux plants, small rugs, string lights, cute signage, and mirrors are just some of the items you can use to spruce up your display.
Popup shops are a fun and highly effective way to promote your brand. Take the time to plan your display and don't be afraid to spend some money on new hardware and decor. If this article was helpful to you in any kind of way or if you have any questions, please comment!
Stay tuned for the next 'Popup Shop Tips' post, in which I will talk about the best ways to engage with shoppers and make sales.
Until next time,