So it was with great interest that we read a blog post about Pop-Up Retail: Not Just for Start-Ups.* It featured results from a recent study out of the UK suggesting that "the pop-up retail sector is growing at 12.3% per year. And the U.S. pop-up industry has grown to approximately $10 billion in sales."
He laments that pop-ups seem to have become associated only with new, emerging retail concepts. We agree with his contention that community development leaders should cultivate pop-up opportunities for all retailers.
But, you don't need to wait for those folks.
- What street front space is being under-utilized in your community?
- How quickly might you be able to set up a pop-up?
- How many different concepts might you be able to showcase over the next few months?
- Be a merchant; exercise your entrepreneurial instincts!
In fact, within your own stores you may have space for a pop-up opportunity! This could be for your own operation or another merchant nearby (who might also offer you space within their store.)
We see it as a great opportunity to inject new vitality into existing spaces.
And studies confirm what merchants already know; the customers really love pop-ups.
- They are drawn to the "unique/exclusive products or experiences,"
- enjoy the "curiosity/excitement/entertainment,"
- respond to the opportunity to "support local/independent businesses."
All in all, a great way to test out your new "rhythms of retail." What are you waiting for?
As Peter Drucker noted, "The best way to predict the future is to create it."
* Matthew Wagner, Ph.D., Pop-Up Retail: Not Just For Start-Ups, And Other Learnings From Its Evolution. February 11, 2021, Main Street America.