GOOD BOOTHS GONE BAD #21: Give Me Space!

I had another chance to walk a craft fair recently. I was actively shopping at this one, or trying to. Once again, I was thwarted by my fellow craftspeople.

Here’s another tip from a crabby shopper:

Leave yourself room to conduct business.

Please… Give your customers room to write a check.

I watched a young woman with a very nice product make a sale to an eager customer. Her table was so full of product there was absolutely no room for the buyer to write a check. (And although the product was lovely, the display was not as appealing as it could have been.)

At one point, the craftsperson actually pointed to a towering display of boxes with product stacked on it and said, “Here, you can write there.” The customer tried to write a check above shoulder height, on the display. The tower wobbled slightly. I could hardly watch.

If your customer has to drop all her packages, including her purse, to write a check with her checkbook balanced on her thigh, then you have just made them jump through incredible hoops simply to buy something from you.

This phenomena isn’t just an issue of limited space. I’ve seen people with very large, complicated booths who still don’t leave twelve square inches of space for people to set down a purse and pull out their wallet.

At the very least, provide people with a clipboard to write a check or sign a credit card slip.

At best, leave a bit of space for you to wrap up that sale.

You may be thinking, “Hey, I made the sale. What do I care what happens after that?!”

Well, halfway through the show, they might think, “Hey… Those would make a great gift for Aunt Sue and Jolene! I should go back and grab a couple more….”

Do you want them to then think, “It would only take a few minutes, I already know what I want.”

Or for them to think, “Oh, geez, no, I can’t bear to go through THAT again!”

Make it easy for them to buy. And make it easy for them to come back and buy MORE.

Author: Luann Udell

I find it just as important to write about my art as to make it. I am fascinated by stories. You can tell when people are speaking their truth--their eyes light up, their voices become strong, their entire body posture becomes powerful and upright. I love it when people get to this place in their work, their relationships, their art. As I work from this powerful place in MY heart, I share this process with others--so they have a strong place to stand, too. Because the world needs our beautiful art. All of it we can make, as fast as we can! Whether it's a bowl, a painting, a song, a garden, a story, if it makes our world a better place, we need to do everything in our power to get it out there.

5 thoughts on “GOOD BOOTHS GONE BAD #21: Give Me Space!”

  1. I actually both a folding desk from Armstrong Products though I know Panel Pro has one also. It is a real life saver. It is portable, the shelves come out and the top slips off then it folds flat. I believe my desk measures 40″ tall so the customer does not have to bend over. There is not a lot of room to put packages from other purchases at the show on it but enough for what I sell on it and plenty of room to write a check or to sign the credit card slip. Here is the link

    I did a show last weekend at it was a very well attended (Belleville IL.)show with traffic drying up in just the last hour all 3 days. The promoter did a very good job getting the customers there. They were not in a big buying mood, I actually made what I want for my bottom line to say it was a good show but they were not carrying a lot of packages around and many vendors were talking about not showing up next year due to lack of sales. Another show this weekend and next weekend then pause for the rest of the year to then start redesigning my booth just can’t wait.



  2. Definitely. When we created our kiosk, I also had a check-writing bar installed so that folks had a space to lay their checkbooks. Additionally, I’ll ask to hold their items so that they don’t have to place them on the ground -they love that! I also have several clipboards for them in case the bar is occupied -one includes the Mewsmember sign-up sheet. Why not? They’ve already got their pen out!

    However, I did forget shopping bags my first year. Doh!


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