Ask Dr. Deborah | How can I drive traffic to my store?
Q: Dear Dr. Deborah,
A few months ago I was finally able to move my bakery business out of my kitchen and into a shop downtown, but my storefront isn’t located on the main road and I’m not getting much foot traffic. It’s taken me a long time to save up so that I can open my own shop. What can I do to drive more customers to my bakery?
A: Hi Carol,
Sincere congratulations on advancing your business to a storefront. You are now in a better position to watch your dough rise – and your bottom line!
To get this underway, consider the following five options:
- Storefront | Depending upon zoning guidelines, make the most out of your storefront. Consider hanging out colorful flags, maybe different ones for different times of the year and promotional themes. Signage is key too. Big, bold and bakery-friendly can be eye catching and mouth-watering.
- Social Media | Facebook is a great platform for driving local engagement. Consider using it to post pictures of your delicious offerings as well as periodic promotions. Announcing events where you’ll be and contests you’re offering can also be fun as well as effective. The more you post in ways that drive traffic to your store and website, the sweeter it will be! Facebook also offers some cost effective advertising options that can be highly targeted geographically.
- Community Engagement | Where you are a community-based business you want to be engaged in your community. This may include participation in craft fairs, festivals, farmers markets, and other local events. Donating to the local school bake sale can also be quite effective. The secret here is to engage in ways that are genuine to what you believe in. Your genuineness will show through and result in touching members of your community in ways that lead to new and repeat business.
- Promote Your Address | Be sure to include your address everywhere. This includes your print and digital marketing channels. Content such as, “Come visit us just around the corner from the town hall,” and including links to Google Maps and visuals of your storefront and location are important.
- Play Well With Others | In community marketing, there is strength in numbers. Teaming up with other, non-competitive retailers, non-profits, and businesses can be cost-effective and relationship-building. This includes ideas like providing the baking goods for local inns and restaurants, cooperative advertising, and offering baked goods deliveries for corporate events. Great sales begins with great relationships.
These are just some ways to have fun while you also drive increased sales. So, get your buns moving and enjoy the sweet outcomes of your labors.