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October 31, 2014

Basic Checklist for Indoor and Outdoor Bazaars

Bazaar season is upon us and for concessionaires/sellers, it helps to have a checklist of the things you need to bring to make the experience comfortable.

Technically there are two types of bazaars: indoor and outdoor. Indoor bazaars are held in hotels, trade halls, malls and any place that’s sheltered from the sun. Outdoor bazaars are often open air and held in parking lots, school gym/grounds, wide and open spaces to attract people [and everything that crawls].

I’ve written about the basic bazaar checklist and I will repeat them here. Take note that this is  part of the outdoor bazaar checklist as well:

  • masking tape
  • Cable ties.
  • Cutting pliers
  • Extra business cards
  • Marking pens
  • Calculator, pad, and paper
  • Your own marketing materials
  • lights
  • signage
  • soap, alcohol, and lots of tissues
  • Spare change in 20s, 50s and 100s

indoorbazaar

Indoor Bazaars

The best part about indoor bazaars is that the temperature is predictable. Always try to visit the place before set up happens. That way, you will know how it is like. If it is comfortably air-conditioned, there’s an 80% chance that it will get hotter once all the stalls are set up. Products and people absorb cold and add to the heat.

Given this, the basic checklist is enough.

Outdoor Bazaar Checklist

Fans: Yes, with an ‘s’. I’m not talking about those cute colorful personal fans. Not even those small Php500 kind fans that you can just put on top of your table. I’m talking about industrial fans in the Php 1,300 range. When temperature hits between the humid 30°C – 35°C, but feels like 40°C even in the shade, you will be thankful that you brought that fan. If you brought extra, your customers will thank you as well. Yes, two fans specially when there are two of you selling. You don’t want to be that smug, thoughtless business owner sitting inches away by the fan while the assistant seller is standing and sweating it out under the sun. Both of you will need it to keep your sanity and humor intact.

Cardboard Boxes. This was an afterthought. It was a sunny day in St. James Alabang when it rained. All the stalls that were located in the field and on the edge of the gym were suddenly standing on puddles of mud. The sad part was, 2 hours after the rain, nobody wanted to venture into those stalls because of the mud. That was when some enterprising stall owner decided to buy balikbayan cardboard boxes in Rustan’s and laid it out on the floor. Soon everybody followed and business was back to normal.

But there isn’t always Rustan’s or a mall nearby where you can buy cardboard boxes. If it rains in the afternoon, chances are, you will need those cardboards to line the floor. You can keep them in your car or delivery van until you need them. The point here is, be prepared.

Tarp and Strings/Cable Tie: You will use this to close off your stall at the end of the day [especially if it is a 2 – 7 day bazaar]. When it rains, you can use this to create a makeshift shelter for your products and buyers to stand on your stall. You will be grateful if you’re the only one who can provide shelter when it starts raining. When people are “stuck” on your side of the bazaar, they will have no choice but look around and buy.

Plastic Container: For some, this is a given. But if you’re doing outdoor selling, plastic containers can be converted into makeshift tables, shelves and protect your products against dust and water.

outdoorbazaar

Surge Protector: Almost all bazaars provide electricity. Some will charge extra Php for the outlet. Be informed that these are all makeshift outlets. If one stall blows a fuse, everybody in that area where the cables are joined will be affected. Protect your appliances [especially if you’re selling food]. Nothing’s worse than getting your appliances short circuited somewhere and not being able to sell because you can’t heat/cook your stuff.

Cooler: When things get hot, like 40°C, an iced cooler helps keep cold drinks and damp face towels to help cool you guys down.

Mosquito Repellents or Fly/Ant Repellents: Outdoors means insects. There will be ants, flies, and mosquitoes, so come prepared! It is not the bazaar organizer’s responsibility to make sure that the grounds are insect-free. Their job is to provide the space. Sometimes these insects come with the space. Your customers [and assistant sellers] will thank you.

Rags, Tissue Paper, Soap: You will need this when the place gets too dusty or when it rains.

Stools: Most bazaar organizers provide stools for sellers. However, due to space constraints, the monobloc chairs they provide can be a waste of space. You might need to bring your own stool so that you can fold it away and it is also more discreet. Bring more than one. One for you and one for your assistant seller. If you can’t stand more than 8 hours under that searing heat, don’t expect your seller to be able to tolerate that as well.

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One Comment on “Basic Checklist for Indoor and Outdoor Bazaars”

  • How Can You Prevent Theft In A Bazaar? says July 8, 2016 at 3:32 am

    […] Avoid blind spots. Sure we’d like everything to be eye-level and placed where the customer can see it. The question is, can we as sellers, see everything from all corners of the booth? If you’re selling in a 2ft x 3ft worth of space, this is a no brainer. But if your booth’s more than 6 feet in length and 5 feet deep, you need more than just an extra pair of eyes. If you can’t have that extra person , then try using a mirror to let you see what’s going on from the far end of your stall.  […]

 


 

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