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3 Smart Ideas To Steal From The Latest Pop-up Stores

Written by Arielle Crane

When it comes to pop-up retail, both traditional brick-and-mortar retailers and e-commerce brands are cashing in on short-term, getting creative, and boosting their sales. Pop-up stores help brands build customer relationships and stay relevant, all while allowing them to test new concepts, experiment, and expand into new cities or verticals. Because of this, more retailers are using its temporary nature to rewrite the rules of retail, plus tap into and capture the shifting consumer mindset, IRL.

Below are our favorite pop-up concepts being executed this month that are worth taking inspiration from.

1. Do It With A Purpose

Setting a clear intention for your pop-up store will help drive more consumers and traction. The Storefront-powered India Store pop-up shop in Hong Kong pops up once a year so customers can feel the quality of the hand-picked fabrics, something that is very important to Pinky, the owner. With her physical store, Pinky can show off her items and connect with her online consumers, who also benefit from this tangible experience.

Driving consumers to your store for a charitable purpose is also something brands are employing with much success. UK based retailer Harrod’s just unveiled its luxury charity pop-up store with its charity partner NSPCC. The pop-up boutique, open the rest of the month, is located in a place donated by Cadogen Estates and is called Fashion Re-Told. All clothes sold have been donated by Harrod’s customers and employees, with proceeds going directly to NSPCC. It’s number one mission is to make the space entirely Instagrammable, because as their head of visual merchandising states, “when you’re doing a charitable initiative, if you don’t generate noise on every platform, you’re never going to make it a success.”

Inside the Fashion Re-Told pop-up by Harrods – Courtesy Photo

2. Use Nostalgia To Drive Sales

This Spring seems all about heritage. As retailers cash in on selling vintage styles and heritage pieces, pop-up stores are also using this concept to drive engagement, foot traffic, and buzz. Fila is opening pop-up stores in NYC with Storefront (and 3 additional ones worldwide) for the relaunch of its popular ‘90s shoe with a chunkier logo. The brand originally came to Storefront with the idea to launch this retro line, and had 650 people come through its doors on the first day. Fila is also tapping influencers to create their own version of the ‘Mindblower’ sneaker, to be on display in all of its pop-up stores.

Streetwear label Cherry Los Angeles is also using nostalgia for its debut collection, opening a pop-up installation on the historic Fairfax Avenue. Titled ‘MICRODOSE’, the installation will feature iconic ‘90s images sprinkled on the pieces.

3. Tap Into Smart (and Thrift-Loving) Shoppers

Today, people have become smarter shoppers not only with their pockets but by sharing exclusive deals and sales with each other (also facilitated by social media). Retailers and secondhand e-commerce companies like as ThredUp, the RealReal and Luxury Garage Sale are cashing in on the consignment concept, using the data its already collected of its online shoppers and translating it into the physical realm.

As ThredUp is experimenting with brick-and-mortar locations, Luxury Garage Sales has just announced its month-long pop-up store in Atlanta offering one-on-one styling and “full-service consignment purposes.”

The RealReal is also on a pop-up tour rolling out activations in new cities to capture its online audience through physical sales and creative physical spaces. Utilizing the power of online data and off-pricing trend, similar brands can use this tactic to launch on their own.

The key to pop-up success is based on consumer reactions, whether it be an in-person emotion or through social media buzz and mentions. Brands that are popping up should pop-up with intention and creativity to succeed.

Ready to book your next pop-up store? Find the ideal space for your project!

About the author

Arielle Crane

Arielle is the Communications Manager at Storefront. Beyond offering up insights on the future of retail and pop-up shops, she also loves to write, travel and watch documentaries. She lives in Brooklyn, NY.