Tips to Combat Customer Sales Lows at Markets

A lot of retail stores see a slowdown in customers around 2 to 3 p.m., including weekends. Everyone dreads it. You’ll even see employees more focused on tasks to occupy themselves through these times. Many retailers use “tricks” to help attract more foot traffic and increase sales volume during these times by announcing spontaneous sales discounts during random times in these typical and annoying customer traffic and sales “lulls.”

Pop-Up Markets see these same lulls, usually after about 2 to 3 hours of being open, no matter the opening times. Texas Trade Days experiences it, too. We hate it just as much as our vendors and we do what we can to help out, but there’s only so much we can do since shoppers are not buying directly from us.

Customers love to shop pop-up markets early to get the best selection of inventory before it’s all picked over, some expect early bird sales and last day sales from vendors, too. However, 1 day markets don’t really have the opportunity to offer last day vendor sales to customers. So, how do we work with customer expectations and keep them coming to the market until we close?

It takes vendors to be active in this battle by offering random sales discounts, especially when foot traffic is low! Texas Trade Days will help promote vendor sales announcements randomly during these lulls, too!

Here’s what Carol Parker, Broker-Owner, recommends to vendors:


THE HATED AFTER 3 HOUR CUSTOMER SALES LOW MANY MARKET VENDORS AND RETAILERS EXPERIENCE. HOW CAN WE GET PAST THAT AND INCREASE OUR STEADY FLOW OF CUSTOMERS AND SALES? IT’S NOT EASY, BUT THERE ARE WAYS MANY RETAILERS USE TO OVERCOME THIS CUSTOMER TREND.


A surprised customer! Wow! 50% off the regular price on your product, or 10%, 20%, 30% and more! Who can resist that? Not many.
Many retailers use different methods. Here are some I’ve seen and I think it’s worth a try at our market events.


Offer a sale when you see a customer low. Post on social media at the time your sale begins, eg., 3:00 to 4:00 (to closing, etc.) Put signs up at your booth during that time. A sale can occur in many ways, eg.:


10% off = $1 off a $10 product
20% off = $2 off a $10 product
30% off = $3 off a $10 product
40% off = $4 off a $10 product
50% off = $5 off a $10 product

Using larger numbers, 20% off= $20 off a $100 product.


There are many ways to set up sales for your products. *One warning for Texas sellers is: You cannot raise your prices to offset your lower sales prices when you advertise or offer sales prices. The sales must truly be lower prices from your regular sales prices.


To be effective, these sales should be random (times, events, etc.) and not predictable. The amount of sales on your products should also vary (10% off one time, 30% off another time, etc.).


The goal is to get more buyers to see these random sales and drive them to your booth! This is helping other retailers fight that customer “low” and I believe, if it’s done right, it can help us overcome it and make more money!


REMEMBER! The key is customer surprise. Unless you want to offer an all day sale, don’t tell your customers you’re offering a sale until later in the day. Telling them early will hurt your purpose to fight against “the customer low.”


Good luck!


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