So you want to create a pop-up, but you don’t know how to do it? There are many elements to creating the perfect pop-up shop, pop-up restaurant or pop-up event – more than you think.

Whether it’s applying for the appropriate licenses & permits, promoting your pop-up, or hiring temporary staff, every successful pop-up is built one step at a time.

Phase 1: The Set-Up

☐ Find a Location – Options can include: empty storefronts, existing stores, existing restaurants, your driveway, an individual’s home, the local park, etc. Be creative!

☐ Secure all permits and licenses – visit your local Town Hall to find out what is required.

☐ Ask your landlord about their requirements – rent, hours of operation, maintenance staff, parking, equipment/furniture usage, etc.

☐ Get insurance – general liability, workers compensation, and other insurance may be required by your landlord.

☐ Lay out your pop-up – Visit your pop-up space and figure out its configuration and aesthetic design. (How will you display your products? Where will your tables and chairs go?)

☐ Purchase equipment, fixtures, furniture, supplies, point of sale systems, and anything else you would need to outfit your space and manage your pop-up.

☐ Create window displays, signs, and banners. Get everything printed at a local print shop.

☐ Hire your staff.

☐ Determine your goal – Are you looking to build your brand? Simply test out your products? See what it’s like to have a retail presence? This will help as you operate your pop-up.

Phase 2: The Operation

☐ Determine your pop-up’s policies (are pets allowed? Public restrooms?)

☐ Set your hours of operation.

☐ Promote your pop-up!

☐ Do something to draw people in – you can promote it all you want online, but how about those who walk by? Balloons, live music and lemonade stands are a few creative ways to draw attention to your pop-up.

☐ Determine the policies for your staff. Make sure they are approachable, knowledgeable and successfully represent your brand!

☐ Get some swag – whether it’s t-shirts, pens, stickers, or mugs, there are cost effective promotional tools you can use to help build your brand!

☐ Organize events! If you are planning a long-term pop-up, why not organize events, parties or get-togethers with the community?

☐ Maintain contact with your landlord. Whether you’re open for two hours or two months, a happy landlord is important.

Phase 3: The Evaluation

☐ Clean up the space.

☐ Disassemble all displays, furniture, banners and signs, and any furniture you customized for your pop-up.

☐ Ask yourself: Would you do it again? Did you accomplish your goal(s)?

☐ Determine net profits.

☐ Thank your landlord!