How to find pop up space

By 14th July 2020May 27th, 2021Leisure & Hospitality
Urban Outfitters Pop Up Store Exterior

Pop ups have proven to be a shining light in the current climate, enabling businesses – in particular food providers and bakeries – to stay open, survive and continue operating (despite COVID restrictions). But Corona is not the only reason to launch a pop up for your brand…

As a recognised $50 billion industry, Pop Ups have been taking the market by storm for a long while now, giving digital first/new businesses the chance to test out ideas or new markets and utilise empty store fronts/vacant buildings, all at a fraction of the cost.

But that is not all…

They can also provide you with the following perks:

  • Lower up front investments – this is great for cash-strapped businesses as pop up stores offer lower rents for commercial space. At the same time, if the building already comes fully equipped; you can save up to 50% on added expenses, as you’ll be able to negotiate reduced costs for using this shared equipment.
  • Low commitment – there is no need to pay for maintenance, repairs or building works as you’ll be moving from one location to the next.
  • Draw in more customers and build-up hype – customers will love trying to guess where you’ll be next. Plus, you’ll be able to set up your business in locations that may have previously been inaccessible, attracting more customers.
  • Tailor to environment – you can take into account location, customer demands/requirements, etc.
  • Test business ideas – it is an opportunity to try out new business/design ideas inexpensively – e.g. product reception and new dishes – as you won’t be trapped in a long term lease. This is particularly useful for digital first retailers who are looking to branch into physical waters as they’ll be able test out locations and store designs before picking a permanent location.
  • Create a sense of urgency – using limited time offers and putting an expiration date on your store, will encourage customers to indulge in impulse buys as they won’t want to ‘miss out’.
  • Build human connections with your audience – given that most customers want to see and touch a product before they buy; pop up stores can help you to create an omnichannel experience where you’re able to connect with your customers on a human level and build up loyalty/trust.
The Poppy Shop | Pop Up Shop
clarks shoe shelves
Virgin Holidays | RI Design

How to find a space

When considering opening a pop up shop it is important that you pick the right space. This will help to maximise profits and ensure that you attract the widest audience:

1. Consider your target audience

  • Where are they? Where do they live? Will it give you access to the right demographic and foot traffic? Is this an aspirational area that they want to visit? Given the current circumstances is this area accessible?
  • When will they want to spend? Are there certain times of the day where they’ll be more interested in visiting and spending money at your store?
  • What’s the best layout for them? Your objective is to offer them the best experience from the moment they walk in until they leave. This means when designing your store you’ll need to take the following into consideration: paints/colours, logos, branding, stock space, lighting, wall treatments, displays, furniture, etc. For instance, mums will need plenty of space to manoeuvre prams so they don’t get stuck. To avoid this you’ll need wider aisles and accessible shelves.

NOTE: when negotiating your short term lease, check to see if 1) you’re allowed to modify the premises (including signage) and 2) if there are any restrictions on when your business can operate.

Top Shop Pop Up Shop Escalator
Pop Up Fashion Store Fixings

2. Compare multiple venues depending on your objectives:

  • Places with guaranteed foot traffic i.e. shopping centres, galleries, festivals vs. vacant retail spaces vs. mobile pop up (can target multiple areas). For example, many shopping centres have got kiosks, booth space and vacant stores that you can temporarily rent, whilst galleries can offer you a blank canvas to translate your brand.
  • Choose areas where you’re not next to competing brands – you’ll be able to build better/stronger business relationships if you compliment their products, rather than competing for the same audience. One idea you can try is pop-ins. These are stores within a store and allow you to piggyback off each other’s successes.

3. Consider the cost

  • The most expensive part of launching a pop up is finding the right location. This means you need to make sure that you select the best one to ensure that you make a return on your investment.
  • To help minimise location costs it may be worth partnering with another retailer. The key is to find independent businesses who have a similar ethos to your own whom may be interested in your cause or the audience you bring in. For instance, bakeries have been taking advantage of empty pub car parks to provide cooking supplies. For pubs/restaurants, this set-up allows them to make some money whilst they are unable to open. For pop ups, it gives you the flexibility of making your store as big or as small as you need, whilst adhering to social distancing.
  • As your store is temporary you’ll find it easier to rent furniture rather than buy it. There are several stores that are willing to rent furniture to businesses on a temporary basis, meaning you can easily save money and still have the chairs, tables, clothing racks, partitions, etc. that you need for displays or changing rooms.
  • Before you hire a space make sure you know exactly what you’ll receive for the agreed upon rental cost i.e. store dimensions, utilities, amenities, furniture, etc.

Once you’ve decided on the kind of space you’re after, you can then take steps to contact landlords and estate agents to see if they have got any suitable places available. They can help you to narrow down your search and compare location costs.

Alternatively, you can use listing sites such as:

These can help you to reduce your expenses even further – as you can cut out the middleman e.g. estate agents/landlords – as well as can supply you with a list of potential locations, based on your criteria.

So if you’re interested in establishing a pop up, then why not keep the above steps in mind? With the right strategy you can harness pop up shops and offer another revenue to your business.

For help setting up a pop up, contact our team at Resolution Interiors today. From location scouting to store design, lighting, shelving and display space; our team can assist you with the entire process.