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Traditional retailers are facing increasing competition from e-commerce sites and the convenience online shopping offers consumers. However, there is still one thing that brick and mortar stores offer that ecommerce sites don’t – the in-store experience. Retail stores can leverage this advantage by hosting special in-store events to create an exciting experience that attracts more customers to your store.

The benefits of in-store events

In-store events give you the opportunity to create a buzz around your brand and store, helping to raise brand awareness. Get your customers excited about an upcoming event and you will see an increase in traffic to your store. This is also an effective way of attracting new customers to your store. They're more likely to become repeat customers, too, because you've given them an experience they will enjoy and remember.

Sales and profits will also see a boost from your in-store events. If people attending your event have an enjoyable time, then they are more likely to buy from you and are likely to spend more. Successful events are great for your brand’s reputation and word-of-mouth because people will tell their friends and post on social media about how much of a good time they had at your event. You can also interact more with your customers in person and gain feedback from them about your brand and in-store experience.

How to make your event a success

Make sure you promote your event well. It is worth investing a budget into marketing in-store events because you should easily earn back what you spent (and then some!) if the event is a success. Place posters or sandwich boards outside your store so passers-by learn about your events. Place more posters around the local area to spread the word further. Social media is a great opportunity to reach your audience and build a buzz around the event. Get people talking about it online and they'll take care of the promotion for you. You can also post flyers through people’s doors around the local area.

Put on a show with your event. You need to make the in-store experience something different than what your customers get any other time they shop with you. Dress up your store to make it look and feel like a special event. Provide your customers with something new, exciting and different. You could, for example, unveil a new clothing line coming to your store, and offer a discount to those attending the event.

Encourage more customers to attend and spend by doing good with your in-store event. For example, you could run the event in partnership with a charity that receives a percentage of the profits made on the night itself. Even if you lose out on some of the profits you would have otherwise made, what you gain from repeat business and increased customer loyalty, along with a positive reputation, should make up for it.

Think about what special in-store events you could host and how you can get local people and businesses involved. It’s a great way to attract more customers to your store and drive sales and profits.

Have you held in-store events before? How did they go?