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How to Start a Pop Up Store: 5 Tips

By Tanya Roth, Esq. | Last updated on

Pop-up retail shops are popping up everywhere.

We're talking about those stores that show up for a brief period, only to disappear into the void once the time period is over. A good example are Halloween shops -- they pop up in September, only to disappear in November. Fireworks shops also fit the bill.

If you want to start a pop-up store, here are give quick tips:

  1. Decide your store's purpose and write your plan. Think about what kind of pop-up store you want to open. Once you've decided what you want your pop-up store to sell, jot down a plan. Your plan should include how long you want to "pop-up" for, how much money you need, and how many workers you'll need.
  2. Shop for a location. You can find a location by going online at, checking out Craigslist or even taking a walk through local retail centers to look for vacant shop spaces.
  3. Get competing lease contracts. Once you've narrowed down a few locations, ask the landlords or property managers for copies of the lease. Look at each lease and read the fine print. Make sure that you can lease the property for the time period you want to. Also, make sure the lease doesn't preclude you from running the type of business that you want to operate.
  4. Check local zoning laws. If the activity you want to run is forbidden at the location that you want to use, then what's the point in signing the lease? Make sure you check your city's zoning ordinances before signing a lease for a pop-up space.
  5. Consider short-term employees. If you'll be running a temporary shop, it might be wise to consider hiring short-term or temporary workers.

Opening a pop-up business presents many of the same challenges as operating a full time business. Have a look at some of our resources below on starting a business.

Related Resources:

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