How do pop-up shops like Spirit Halloween in CNY continue to make money?

Pop-up stores have been a go-to marketing strategy for retailers for years and they continue to be successful.

By Brooke Meenachan East Syracuse, N.Y. (NCC News) — Pop-up stores have been a go-to marketing strategy for retailers for years.

A pop-up shop is a temporary retail store that pops up for a short period of time.

According to a retail marketing database, the pop up industry was valued at $50 billion dollars last year.

Pop-up shops, such as Spirit Halloween, are successful because they establish their business based on certain characteristics.

Spirit Halloween was one of the first pop up shops in country and has had success for over 30 years.

The goal of a pop-up shot is to provide unforgettable customer experience and do it in a short amount of time. Pop-up shops like Spirit Halloween do more than what a traditional retailer would.

“People go in there not to just shop, but to have an actual experience,” Senior Business Advisor Karen Livingston said. “So, they consider things like sounds and animatronics and having people come in and build a rapport with them. They’re excited to shop. It’s a true experience.”

Because of the store environment, the pop up shop attracts customers for the four short months it’s open. Going into an industry that estimates about $8 billion in spending each year. Halloween spending is expected to reach a record-breaking $9 billion this year, surpassing 2016 by more than 8 percent.

There is always customers coming in and out of each store in the Syracuse district, according to Spirit Halloween District Manager William Pickens.

“It gets very busy. Members of our community absolute love coming into Spirit Halloween. They love what we have to offer and our community really loves to support us and they’ve done an excellent job. Traffic is great and it’s what you expect for Halloween and each year it’s getting better and better,” he said.

Despite only having a store front for a few months, companies benefit from signing a shorter lease.

“They only have to cover the two months of the overhead coast versus a whole twelve months, which would be difficult to float,” Livingston said.

Another reason they stay successful is because they are constantly working on improving their brand.

“At the end of every season, they do a huge round of what went well and what didn’t go well and actually take action on what they’ve identified and adjust for the next season,” Livingston said.

Spirit Halloween also expands every year.

  • Started with 60 pop up stores
  • Expanded to over 1,200

Pickens says the short season is a benefit to working for a pop-up shop like Spirit Halloween.

“It’s a huge convenience working a few months out of the year here. It allows for flexibility and lets me do things in my life I still want to do,” he said.

  • 80 percent cheaper than tradition retail store
  • 1/5 of what it would cost to run a store full scale

Economists say more and more landlords are opening their doors to pop-up stores because the number of stores closing or going out of business is growing.