Not ready to open a brick & mortar shop? Try a popup event!

A popup shop is a great way of drawing attention to your brand without the hefty financial commitment of a long-term lease. The popup has a sense of magic about it: you never know where it’s going to appear, so when you happen upon it, it has the air of an event not to be missed, like a traveling carnival.

The possibilities here are endless. There are a lot of small businesses that simply don’t have the wherewithal to open up a permanent store, especially since so much commerce can now take place on the internet. But with a popup, you don’t have to be a major brand with a battalion of employees. Maybe you will be that kind of company in the future, or maybe you’ll never be. You might, for instance, be a magazine about modernist architecture that occasionally likes to create a themed store. And your store might look like this:

The Modernist Popup Shop
What lovely artful bowls on your Expedit bookshelf, my dear.

If your popup business is a bakery or other catering venture, you might be able to find a popup space that accommodates both production and sales. For example, United Kitchen in Chicago does both:

United Kitchen Chicago
Everyone loves a surprise cupcake shop.

This space rents by the hour, at a very reasonable rate, to local independent businesses. In Chicago and interested in checking it out?  Book it now!

The legalities of popup shops can still be complicated, but it’s becoming such a common phenomenon that there are plenty of guides out there to help you figure it out, like Christina Norsig’s Popup Retail. A few basic tips are to make sure that you have liability insurance for the venture, and that you’re not violating any liquor licensing statues in your state. Offering patrons of your holiday shop a cup of spiked eggnog might be more trouble than it’s worth!

The original popup retail.


Photo credits: stevendepolo / / CC BYDee Speed / / CC BY