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How Can eCommerce Brands Build Successful Pop-Up Shops?

January 31, 2020
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In recent years, the pop-up store has emerged within the retail market as a popular and celebrated trend. Originally launched within major cities during the 1990s but soon expanded across the U.S., pop-up shops are commercial spaces aiming to sell merchandise and disappear after a set amount of time.

This retail concept offers an immersive shopping experience for consumers while saving retailers money in the process. In fact, pop-ups cost 80% less to launch than a full-time store. Pop-up stores are an innovative way for omnichannel brands to bridge the gap between their online presence and commitment to a permanent brick and mortar store location. Ultimately, a pop-up shop generates excitement and a sense of urgency in the minds of consumers in a way that concrete storefronts simply cannot. It’s the limited time only mentality that gets shoppers eager to shop until the drop. And with good reason, too — they don’t know the next time certain styles or brands will be available for purchase in their local market. These shops are ideal for eCommerce retailers because they help increase visibility, generate buzz around the brand, and help test the potential gain from the brand adding permanent physical stores to their strategy.

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Looking to cultivate an immersive space for your brand? eCommerce retailers that create successful pop-ups must ensure they have three key aspects solidified before opening their doors: a stellar location, engaging signage, and a Retail Management System (RMS) with customer targeting capabilities.

Location, Location, Location

Finding the ideal location for a pop-up shop is a major concern for a retailer. Areas with high foot traffic are ideal — retailers want to ensure their business is located in a populated area in order to ensure large amounts of clientele. More importantly, however, the majority of these individuals should encompass the business’ target market. If a retailer is opening up a children’s clothing store but the majority of clients in the area are elderly and childless, the retailer will find it hard to attract like-minded consumers and turn a profit because the customers’ needs do not fit the overall business model.

It’s also important to survey the stores already operating in the chosen area. If a store displaying a similar product offering is experiencing success, competition will increase, and it will be difficult to break into the market and develop a loyal following. First mover advantage is ideal, and it’s a great way to develop positive relationships with fellow shop owners.

Create Welcoming Signage

In an effort to conform to the aesthetic of a website, it’s important to hone in on a retail store’s visual identity with warm and welcoming branded signage. Observable branding helps customers identify familiar symbols of an online business — allowing them to feel right at home, outside of the internet.

Retailers have a multitude of options when it comes to choosing signage that increases customer interest and attracts them to a particular display. In fact, this is a great opportunity for retailers to get creative, and truly differentiate themselves from potential competition. Eyebrow-raising ideas include scene-stealing window decals, eccentric neon signs, or witty wall art. An exterior-facing logo is a great way to attract passersby, so long as the signage is large enough to be seen from a distance. By doing so, not only will the physical shop be easily spotted by potential customers, but it will also help to create a physical association in the minds of consumers.

To ultimately make the physical store more effective, retailers should let the data from their RMS advise them on which items are their best sellers, versus those not selling. The next step would be to structure the layout of the physical store so that best-selling items can easily catch the customer’s eye. Retailers don’t want to waste customers’ time by having them dig through a mountain of inventory to find what they are looking for — the items should be carefully curated, easily accessible and in stock. If not currently in stock, the items should be easily shipped from other locations, warehouses, or directly to the customer. 

Purchase an RMS with Strong Marketing Capabilities

One of the most powerful tools for creating a successful retail space lies in acquiring an RMS with cutting-edge marketing and targeting capabilities. With software programmed to focus marketing efforts on the right customers at the right time, retailers have the opportunity to turn infrequent shoppers into loyal customers. 

A quality RMS allows retailers to reach customers via a variety of channels, such as mail, phone, email, text and via promotional messages and ads built into e-receipts for powerful outreach campaigns. For example, if a customer recently purchased a new bathing suit, the retailer can send an email to the customer alerting them to similar bathing suit styles that may also pique their interest, or other beach-wears such as shorts and tank tops to complement their choice. To encourage repeat visits, a coupon for a certain percentage off their next order can be included within the campaign. Before long, these one-time customers will become loyal to the brand, thanks to personalized perks and value-driven offers.

A high caliber software also provides retailers with the opportunity to breakdown recent customer data, and target these customers based on a variety of factors, such as minimum dollar amount spent, date of last purchase, or a specific style. If a retailer was to target a group of customers who had recently spent $100 or more in the retailer’s pop-up shop, they can then customize their email campaigns to feature items with a slightly higher than average price point, as these particular customers have spent that amount in the past, so it is likely they will be open to spending more in the future. In addition, sales can easily be increased by analyzing the current pool of customers and understanding why certain customers may now be spending less than previously recorded. 

Additionally, enabling customers to create their own profiles is a great way to dive deeper into customer preferences and streamline order history — all while making the customer feel cared for and distinguished.  Once inside the pop-up store, customers can use their profile data to quickly locate relevant items, improving the shopping experience and giving customers the personalization they crave.

Cultivating Experiences and Growing Business

Providing customers with meaningful, in-the-know experiences based on the culture of today is an effective route to developing brand loyalty and spearheading business growth.

To learn more about how your omnichannel retail brand can spread awareness both in-store and on the web, contact a member of our team today.