What exactly is a pop-up shop?

  • Posted Fri 29 August 2014

Whether you hear temporary retail, flash retailing, pop-up store, or pop-up shop, it is all one and the same. Pop-up shops are taking over the retail world and rethinking traditional brick-and-mortar and big-box stores, but what exactly is a shop that pops up?

Sighted as early as the 1990s in large urban cities such as Tokyo, London, Los Angeles and New York City, pop-up shops and pop-up retail are temporary retail spaces that sell merchandise of any kind. That’s right, just about every consumer product has been sold via a pop-up shop at one point in time. From art to fashion to tech gadgets and food, pop-ups are exciting because they create short-term stores that are just about as creative as they are engaging. And they come in all shapes and sizes.

Specific Details

  • Term. Typically 1 day to 3 months. IGNORE
  • Location. High foot traffic areas such as city centers, malls, and busy streets.
  • Price. Much lower than a traditional store; typically paid upfront.
  • Use. Sell products, presence during holidays or events, launch new products, generate awareness, move inventory, test idea or location, increase ‘cool’ factor.

What are the benefits of a pop-up shop?

  • Connect with customers: The pop-up retail format allows you to personally get to know your customers and build stronger relationships.
  • Sell more: About 95% of all purchases are still completed offline. This is your opportunity to take advantage of the retail channel.
  • Build awareness: Consumers and the media love the excitement generated by pop-up shops. Build brand awareness by going offline.
  • It’s cheaper: Launching a pop-up shop is 80% cheaper than a traditional retail store.
  • Test new markets: Easily enter a new market and launch new products.

So, who can start pop-up shop?

The short answer is everyone. Big-name brands, including eBay, Target, JCPenney, and Gap, have tested hosting pop-up products in their stores. At the same time, local artists, makers and fashion designers have also become increasingly popular in the pop-up scene. Even mobile trucks for food, designer fashion and vintage housewares have been spotted around cities like New York City, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.



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