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Business accelerators: 6 ways pop ups can help your business

June 20, 2017

Pop ups are a kind of “flash” retailing—a short-term sales space where businesses can take advantage of temporary demand. Even big brands such as Target and Levis take advantage of pop-ups because they are a cost-effective way to bring in extra cash, experiment with products or locations, and make use of “dead” space.

Here are 6 reasons to try a pop-up location:

1. Reduce the costs of business.

Pop ups only pay real estate costs for the time they are using the space. This can really help fledgling businesses start to build up capital until they are able to afford a more permanent location.

2. Capitalize on seasonal markets.

Pop ups are ideal for seasonal businesses. Halloween stores, summer tourist shops, and Christmas stores can capitalize on a limited market without investing a lot of money.

3. Draw a crowd.

Some pop-ups help attract more business. One business alone might not generate a lot of foot traffic, but sharing space can help generate interest and partnership opportunities that would not otherwise exist. For example, an eyebrow threading business could pop up at a hair salon, or a henna artist could create a pop up within a nail salon.

4. Improve visibility.

Experimenting with pop ups help small businesses get in front of new traffic flows and new customers. For example, perhaps your business is not on the main thoroughfare. Experimenting with a pop up in a more central location can be a way to market to customers who may not have noticed your business before. Include signage, business cards, or perhaps coupons to encourage foot traffic in the regular storefront. Alternately, trying a pop up in a mall during sale seasons are a great way to get the word out about your business.

5. Test a new location.

Pop ups also allow businesses to try out completely new locations, including new cities. The Insights app can show you where your customers live so you don’t poach customers from your current location. It can also show you where customers with similar demographics live or how similar businesses perform in a specific area.

6. Test a new product.

Some chefs open pop ups to experiment with new dishes without interrupting their current business. A pop up allows them complete creative license to try whatever they want, see what diners like, and test out alternative price points.

When considering a pop up, make sure to examine all legal issues—special licenses required, or restrictions on use of space—in your rental agreement. There are also logistical challenges that should be addressed, such as transporting goods and having adequate utilities like water and electricity. Pop ups are an exciting, scrappy way to accelerate business, but require careful planning.

Research pop up locations with the Insights app from the Clover App Market.

[image: Curve Roasters pop-up brew bar at Nape, Camberwell by Bex Walton on flickr]