The Ultimate Guide to Pop-Up Shops


For both consumers and retailers alike, the digital divide between the online and the offline world of commerce are collapsing. Out of the rubble, a new future is emerging, one in which consumers expect to seamlessly choose between making a purchase online, in-store, or frankly wherever they find themselves.

As merchants shuffle to reorganize themselves, one trend that becomes more and more apparent and shows no signs of disappearing is the pop-up shop. With the appeal of a temporary rental agreement, the possibility of creating highly engaging and targeted experiences (such as a pop-up store for the holidays), and customers who jump at the idea of something exclusive, pop-up shops are the new cool kids on the retail block.

Pop-up shops provide online retailers a low-cost and highly-effective sales channel that not only increases brand awareness, but provides a means to get a taste of conducting business face-to-face and reap the advantages of observing customer reactions to products and quickly soliciting their feedback. But, if you’ve only ever sold online, where do you even start?

Luckily, we know how hard it can be to get your feet wet with physical retail when you’ve only sold online, which is why over the past few months, we’ve provided extensive resources around getting started and finding success with pop-ups.

Today, we’re proud to announce an even more extensive resource with the launch of “The Ultimate Guide to Pop-Up Shops.”

What You’ll Learn

Here’s what you’ll find inside this comprehensive guide:

  • Chapter 1 - Why Run a Pop-Up Shop?: From learning about the benefits of running a pop-up, to determine your goals and figuring out a reasonable budget, this chapter walks you through the nuts and bolts of getting started.
  • Chapter 2 - How to Pick the Perfect Location?: Picking the right location is half the battle to a successful pop-up shop. This chapter covers the different types of locations you can look into, what you should look for when deciding, and most importantly how to close the deal.
  • Chapter 3 - How to Take Your Brand Offline: It’s not always a black and white when it comes to translating your online brand to a physical retail store. Whether it’s assessing your brand personality or target customer demographic to understanding all the different areas of a retail space you’ll need to pay attention to, this chapter will walk you through it step-by-step.
  • Chapter 4 - Visual Merchandising 101: Once you’ve picked out your space, figured out what goes where, trying to imagine how your signage, window display, or even in-store displays will come together can be tough for your first crack in physical retail. Not to fret, we’ve got you covered with all the details in this chapter for making your store visually effective and appealing.
  • Chapter 5 - Marketing Your Pop-Up Shop Pt. 1: After all the sweat, time, and money spent in getting your pop-up shop ready, getting it launched and making it a success requires some serious marketing muscle. In this chapter, I cover influencer marketing tactics to build some local buzz as well as crafting a PR strategy to broaden your reach.
  • Chapter 6 - Marketing Your Pop-Up Shop Pt. 2: Once you’ve done some of the outreach legwork upfront to secure coverage for your shop, it’s time to start layering in a variety of social media channels, trying out guerrilla marketing tactics, and bringing everything together using an event calendar to keep yourself on track.
  • Chapter 7 - How to Evaluate Your Pop-Up Shop’s Success: When it’s all said and done, you’re going to want a wide array of metrics to look at to determine the ROI on your pop-up shop experiment and whether it’s something you’d do again. From looking at different sales metrics, leveraging different tools to gauge your reach on social channels, and gauging real-time customer feedback, this chapter helps you gauge the true success of your pop-up shop.
  • Chapter 8 - Pop-Ups and the Future of Retail: Pop-ups are going to continue in their popularity and are loved by ecommerce brands big and small. Find out how the likes of Warby Parker and Bonobos have put them to the test and how more niche brands like HutchLA and KithNY are using them to expand their reach.

Hopefully this will get you started towards building out your omni-channel retail strategy. Also, if you've done a pop-up shop before, be sure to share your tips in the comments below.

P.S. if you like this post, you'll love our How to Create a Successful Pop-Up Shop video series and our infographic on 8 Reasons Why You Need to Do a Pop-Up Shop

P.P.S. Looking to do a pop-up shop? Check out Shopify POS.

Read the Full Guide.