You have online customers, a well-liked product, and an optimized website for sales. Your e-commerce sales are growing, social media mentions increasing, and you see a bright future for the brand. But under all the growth, you have another concern: Am I missing out on opportunities in brick and mortar?
Could more shoppers discover your brand, convert more frequently, or understand your products in a store versus online?
Many online-first brands want to engage more with shoppers but feel nervous about opening an expensive physical store. It involves signing a lease, hiring employees, and keeping more inventory. And with increasing e-commerce sales, why fix something that’s not broken?
This is the point when many consider if it’s time for a pop-up store.
A Background on Pop-ups
Pop-ups have been around for 25 years in major cities. They’re an easy way to connect with shoppers and build your brand.
While leasing a brick and mortar space used to involve complex contracts and agreements, it’s easier than ever today. There are loads of spaces with short-term rental agreements that offer less commitment than a year-long lease. Sites like StoreFront and Appear Here and hundreds of brokers help brands connect with these short-term spaces.
There are many different reasons to create a pop-ups for brands big and small.
Pop-ups can last as little as a few weeks to several months. The store can act as an experiment for a brick and mortar concept or just a one-off event. Locations can be in expensive areas with heavy foot traffic or in an off-the-beaten-path neighborhood to build buzz for a brand.
Regardless of what your current business goals are, it can be hard to pull the trigger.
There is No “Best Time”
Any company can have a pop-up, regardless of size, age, or product. A pop-up can be a stand outside for a day or a high-foot-traffic space for months.
The question is how much to invest to meet your goals. You can have a pop-up for a few thousand dollars or upwards of $500k. If you are on a tight budget and need to educate shoppers quickly, opening a store in a specific event like a festival, show, or conference can be an effective solution. If you have a more established product and a larger audience, maybe you want to explore if brick and mortar is a potential revenue channel and invest in inventory and space.
With so many types of pop-ups, brick and mortar can really be for any brand. There are a huge range of options and opportunities for brands starting their first pop-up, even for early stage companies. And if you take the right steps beforehand, you can be sure that your pop-up store will be well on its way to success.