Starting a Farmers Market Stand: Secrets for Success
With responsible food sourcing becoming a more popular topic of conversation, it’s no wonder locally grown produce is in high demand. There’s a lot that goes into setting up and operating a farmers market stand, so let’s dive into some of the basic things to keep in mind as you get started and also as you plan for the future.
The Optimal Farmers Market Stand Design
Visual merchandising is an important part of any shopping experience. No matter what you’re selling, arranging your products in an eye-catching manner makes them more appealing to customers. The same basic principle applies for farmers markets.
- Vary the Height of Your Products - Try using risers (which can be simple wooden boxes) to create a dynamic display where customers can more easily see all your products.
- Make Your Table Look Full - Make sure you bring enough stock to cover most of your table and extra to replenish any empty space that appears as people purchase your items. Creating a sense of abundance makes people more likely to buy.
- Incorporate Signage - Clearly labeling the names and prices of everything you’re offering with signs can help customers feel informed about their purchasing decisions and can lead to quicker transactions.
Unexpected Supplies You’ll Need for Your Farmers Market Stand
Of course, there are some obvious things every farmers market stand needs (like a table and cash register). But there are a handful of small supplies that can make a big difference in creating a pleasant shopping experience for your customers.
- Tasting Spoons - Giving out free samples of your homemade jams, sauces, and spreads with tasting spoons ensures that customers know what they’re getting before they spend money on your products. This approach can help seal the deal with customers who may be unsure about buying and can also establish a sense of trust and loyalty that people will hopefully share with their friends.
- Coffee Airpots or Hot Beverage Dispensers -
Especially if your market stand is located outdoors during the autumn months, providing customers with a hot beverage to go along with your fresh baked goods, or even just to enjoy as they walk around the rest of the market, is a great way to make money on days when your crop may be a little thin.
- Eco-Friendly Disposables - Disposable bowls, cups, bags, and containers make it convenient for customers to enjoy your products right away, while adhering to the environmentally responsible principles that are so valued in the farmers market community.
- Branded Canvas Tote Bags - Of course, people shopping will need to carry all their items home with them, but not everyone will come to the market prepared with a bag. By selling canvas tote bags with your stand’s name and logo on them, your customers can show their loyalty to your business and promote it at the same time. Plus, they can carry their purchases more easily!
A Farmers Market Can Be a Springboard for Your Business
If your end goal is to open a brick and mortar store, selling your goods at a farmers market stand is a great way to test out your market. You can find out how your product is received and if you’re selling something that the community really wants or needs. Starting out at a farmers market is a great chance for your business to find its footing and work out the kinks. This approach also helps you build a customer base before your store even opens, which can get you off to a great start.
From setting up your farmers market stand for the very first time to planning for the future of your business, these simple tips can go a long way towards ensuring your success. By anticipating the needs of your customers and providing them with things like disposable bowls, you can increase your sales. And when it comes time to start planning for the future, your farmers market stand will have given you the hands-on experience you need to open a brick and mortar location.