8 Marketing Ideas for Independent Retailers

One of the questions I hear most often from Brick and Mortar store owners is “How do I get my business seen?” We all know the old adage, “build it and they will come.” Unfortunately, this isn’t necessarily the truth with retail businesses.  Building a loyal and dedicated base of customers takes time.  It also takes quite a bit of effort to get people in your door. Today, I’m sharing 8 tips for micro retail business owners to get your shops seen.

Most often, I hear retailers talking about social media.  They feel like this is the only way they can market their business.  Yes, I’m all for marketing your business on social media!  But the first thing I’ll tell you with marketing is don’t put all your eggs into one basket.

There are many ways aside from Facebook and Instagram, and now TikTok that can generate some buzz around your business and get people into your door.  Think outside the social media box and start implementing a few of these techniques.

TIPS FOR SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS:#1: IN-STORE EVENTS

Hosting one or two amazing sale events in your store each year can generate some of your most profitable days of the year.  Want a fun idea for your event?  Click here to read my DIY post on how to make scratch-off tickets for your store’s event!

#2: OUT OF STORE EVENTS

Getting out of your store and in front of thousands of shoppers at market events can expose your business to people who may not have found you otherwise.  And click here to learn how to set sales and inventory benchmarks for market events.

#3: OTHER MARKETING

This can include the marketing materials you have printed and distribute or even your email list which you should consider GOLD! Email marketing is one of the most underutilized forms of marketing, yet has a great return on investment for micro retailers!

#4: ADVERTISING AND MEDIA

Don’t be intimidated by your local newspaper or TV station – most TV stations with their own local news shows are looking for new businesses to feature.  Sometimes all it takes is a phone call or email to the producer of the show.

#5: NETWORKING

Get out to local business networking events and workshops.  Take your business card and don’t be afraid to ask people to follow you on Instagram or Facebook.   You never know who you will meet at one of these events!  I can’t tell you how many times someone has told me, “I have to tell my sister (my best friend or my Mom) about your store!” after they learn about our home decor boutique.

#6: ONLINE PRESENCE

I highly recommend that all retailers have a website but if it isn’t in your budget yet, I understand we all have to start somewhere.  At the minimum, you should claim your Google Business Listing.  The majority of searches done online to find a local business are on Google.  Your Google My Business Listing is the best way for people searching the internet to find you and it’s FREE!

#7: LOCAL PRESENCE

Take a day to get out of your store and visit your retail neighbors.  Introduce yourself and let them know why you make such a great neighbor.  Then find a way to team up with your retail neighbors to create an event that will bring customers and shoppers to your area.

#8: CUSTOMER SATISFACTION

This can include many things but there’s nothing quite like referrals and word of mouth.  The experience you offer your customers is above and beyond what Amazon or any other online retailer can offer.  Use this to your advantage!

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Marketing Ebook for Retail Business Owners

There are dozens of other marketing techniques in each of the categories above but this is a good place to start.  We sometimes get into a rut when it comes to marketing our businesses.  I completely get it.  Hopefully, this list will give you a renewed view of marketing!  It CAN be fun and I promise it will get people into your door.

Want more ideas? Grab my 72-page marketing ebook just for Independent Retailers! It’s packed with ideas for marketing your retail business and increasing both foot and online traffic.

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