It’s spring and time for most farmers’ markets to get back into full swing. Oregon has about 120 farmers’ markets around the state. (Portland’s first outdoor market was started back around 1873!!) They’re all filled with local farmers and artisans sharing displaying their wares, and usually have live music and a broad choice of food. And with the growing desire to support local and be more environmentally aware, farmers’ markets are a great place to showcase your products. The trick is to stand out in the crowd.
People love to attend, and it’s a great way to get exposure for your product and a little extra cash in your pocket. It’s best to plan ahead for the entire season, which often runs March – November. And that means a farmers’ market tent. What’s the 4-1-1 on farmers’ market tents? Keep reading.
6 Farmers’ Market Tent Considerations Before You Purchase
A farmers’ market tent is an investment in your business and your brand, so it’s important to weigh the quality with your budget. You’ll want something to last the throughout at least one season. Get the highest quality your budget allows.
You’ll be setting up and taking down your tent every weekend. You’ll want a tent that’s management, so if it’s just you each market day, you don’t want a tent that takes 2 people to setup.
A farmers’ market tent can weight anywhere between 35-60 pounds. You’ll have to get it from your car to your designated space. And don’t forget you’ll want some weights to keep your tent from blowing away in any kind of wind. Some use sandbags, but weight plates are less likely to cause customers to trip.
Know the size of the space you’re renting and choose a tent that’s congruent with it. (Most spaces are 10’x10’. You don’t want to be taking over your neighbor’s area, but you want to use as much space as you can to have room for your product and your customers.
Farmers’ Market tents come in every color of the rainbow. But there’s a reason most vendors choose white. Colored tents can become faded over time, and while a brand new colored tent is vibrant and excited, a faded one looks tired and unprofessional.
But another reason to keep it white is all about your product. Sun will filter through a colored tent and tint everything under it the color of the tent. So a red tent can make everything under it appear pink. Whether you’re selling veggies, flowers, or pottery, you’ll want your colors to be as true as possible.
Last, many markets require uniformity for their booths. And white is the color of choice. A white tent will allow you to market anywhere.
Many tents come with walls. Most farmers’ market vendors would rather have airflow and visibility, specially in the hot summer months. If you choose a tent with walls, make sure you can vent each side so it doesn’t get hot and stuffy at your booth.
After Purchase Considerations
There’s nothing more eye-catching than your logo or tagline printed right on the outer edge of your tent. It’s above eye level and visible from across the market. Make your company name known by displaying right on your tent.
When you print your name or tagline on your tent, it also serves as a marker for those word-of-mouth customers trying to find what their friend purchased last market day. This on-tent logo and lettering gives them confidence that they’re in the right place for what they’re at the market to purchase.
You may want some banners on your tent or flags in front of your space. A well-designed banner can transform your sales! Each can be tastefully branded and create anticipation for what your customers will discovery inside.
You want your tent sparkling clean every single market moment. So if you pack up in the middle of a March rainstorm, make sure to air out your tent so it doesn’t grow any mold. (Another benefit of a white tent — it’s easier to clean.) It only takes 24-48 hours for mold to start to grow!
Farmers’ market customers have a few specific needs in mind when they shop. No matter what you’re selling, consider these 6 things words when you create your in-tent signage:
Set up your under-tent display so it feels full but not overwhelming. A customer’s eye should naturally flow from one area to the next. Consider natural materials to help display your products, whether wicker baskets, wooden shelves, or even hay bales. And cover your table with cloth to present a polished, put-together look. Creativity can be your best friend!
Follow these guidelines and you’ll have an incredibly successful farmers’ market season that’s fun and full of profit. We’re here to make sure you have signage design that grabs people’s attention and fits your market.