How to Boost Your Online Business by Being a Vendor at Local Markets

Two weekends ago I participated in the Annual Ruskin Seafood Festival. It's always a highly anticipated festival for the local community and is very well attended each year. I have been fortunate enough to participate as a vendor for the last five years. 

It definitely makes for a super busy weekend and at least a week of preparation. There is also cost involved for vendor fees, tent purchase or rental, tables and displays.  So why do I do it? 

First of all it is the perfect hands on way for me to find out what products my customers like. I get to talk to people and really get a feel for what interests them. 

People that might not otherwise give my company a second thought, will be very easily coaxed to come over and taste what I have available. I can ask questions and share my expertise in a casual environment. 

In turn my customers get to put a brand with a face and learn about all of the products and services that I offer. 

Markets are also a great place to offer limited stock items or special items that you might only have seasonally. Try to make sure that whatever you are selling is available to taste, test or try. People are much more inclined to buy those items. 

I always have some sort of incentive for my email sign up which allows me to build my list. This is something that you should always be doing when you have an online business. It will allow you to follow up with these people and keep them interested in you and your products.

I do caution you to do your research and participate in markets that get a good amount of traffic. This can be trial and error at first, but soon you will know which ones are worth your time and effort. 

As your business grows you may only want to do a couple of markets a year depending upon your business needs and personal choice.

This year I got my whole family involved which made it even more fun. 

So take a look at making markets a part of your online business plan. They can really help you gain confidence and exposure.