5 Tips for Outdoor Vendors for a Great Event Experience
Whether you outdoor vendors at farmers’ markets, flea markets or art/craft fairs, preparedness is key. There are many variables when displaying at outdoor events, so here at Gutterpy, we’ve put together 5 tips we think are essential to having a successful day at your event.
Bring a Toolbox
You never know what may come up when you’re displaying at an outdoor event such as a craft fair or farmer’s market, so carrying a toolbox with you with a variety of items is super helpful. Consider including things like duct tape, hammer, nails, scissors, string and safety pins that may come in handy when setting up your tent or displaying your product. And make sure you come prepared with personal products, too, like a first aid kit (very important), allergy medicine and tissues. Extension cords, cell phone chargers, and power strips are absolutely necessary, especially if you’re operating credit card machines or even have a computer handy.
Consider How You Transport Product and Equipment to and from Your Display
Basically what we are saying is, get yourself a dolly/hand truck. Your entire body will thank you, as will your product. It’s a lot more efficient to stack boxes on a hand truck than carry containers one at a time, especially if you are unsure of the distance between your vehicle and your display area. Invest in a decent quality hand truck with bigger tires, as it will be more durable and the larger tires will roll more smoothly over uneven terrain.
Keep Plenty of Business Cards on Hand and Have a Way to Capture Contact Info
Even though your primary objective as a vendor is to sell product, part of your experience will be networking and relationship building. Make sure you are prepared with enough business cards and have a way to display them where visitors will have easy access. You’ll also want a way to capture visitors’ email addresses. This can be done with a simple sheet of paper on a clipboard, or you can even have a little kiosk with an iPad or a laptop where people can enter their emails directly.
And, you’ll want to make sure you have a follow up plan once you get those emails. Considering that email is still the number one most effective digital marketing channel, the addresses you collect are just as valuable as the sales you make. Make sure you add these emails to a database in an email marketing program such as Mailchimp, Constant Contact, or iContact (among others), and send out regular updates and newsletters to keep visitors engaged long after they leave the venue.
Be Prepared to Take Payment
This may seem like a no-brainer, but it is critical to making sales. You’ll need to be prepared to make both cash and credit card sales. Make sure you have a cash box with enough small bills to make change for those customers who pay with larger bills.
Considering more and more people are opting not to carry cash, you absolutely need a way to make credit card sales. There are plenty of POS (Point of Sale) systems out there, but really something as simple as Stripe or Square is sufficient. An added benefit of these options is that customers have the option to input their email address to receive their receipt – yet another way to collect contact info!
Take Care of Yourself
Another seemingly obvious tip is to make sure your health and well being is taken care of. So, pack plenty of food and snacks, and obviously water. Days are long for outdoor vendors, so make sure you’re well fed (read: eat full meals the day before), well-hydrated (avoid alcohol) and protected from the sun. And, just like your mother has probably told you, make sure you get a restful night’s sleep the night before!
The other part of having a successful vendor outing is having a great, reliable tent. The Gutterpy is a unique, cost effective option, and, thanks to its gutters and superior construction and materials, will keep you and your products safe from the elements, no matter what the weather does! The Gutterpy is also customizable, so you can get it printed with your logo and brand colors! Learn all about it here.