Time spent on researching your future pop up shop isn’t wasted; it means less time correcting mistakes in your plan further down the line. When a big company does something wrong, it has time, resources and finance to carry on. If your time, resources and finance are more limited, mistakes may mean the end of everything you’ve worked for.
Here are five common mistakes (and how to fix them):
The wrong location: Being off the high (main) street, even if only a few metres away, can mean low footfall (pedestrian traffic). Visit the location, watch and count how many passing customers you might get. Think about how to increase footfall while you’re open.
The wrong look and feel: Making your shop look cool is important, and it must match your brand and customers. Find the balance between bohemian and high-end retail and play with the temporary nature of what you’re doing. Look at how successful retailers present their stores and take inspiration from their style.
The wrong opening hours: Staffing your shop is the biggest commitment you’ll make. Open at hours that match local traders and footfall patterns. Make it clear to visitors when you’re open and when you’re closed.
The wrong atmosphere: Your shop needs to be welcoming without being overpowering and pushy. The right layout of furniture, fixtures and fittings and a clear brief for staff will help find the right balance. Again, look at the welcome you get in successful stores.
The wrong marketing: You need to reach the right customers to match what you’re doing. Too glossy and corporate can be off-putting if you’re running a community project, and you can’t be too scrappy if you’re selling a high-end product like art.