Getting to Your Market

You have product. You have a display. You have practiced setting up your display in the backyard or in your living room. You are ready. Or are you?

Have you considered how you are going to get all of this stuff to market? Not all of us have the resources to be able to get a semi-truck to transport all of our stuff to market. Even if you could, that has a host of other issues; narrow streets, parking, etc.

However you are going to transport your display to market, this should be practiced as well. Will it all fit in the vehicle you have? Is it easy to load the vehicle and unload it when you arrive?  When you load your vehicle, start with the big stuff first. Folding tables go on the bottom so you can stack stuff on top of them. Make sure you have room for your tent. The tent and tables are probably the bigger items you have.

We are fortunate to have a truck at our disposal. Our display goes into the bed of the truck where it is now permanently stored due to the purchase of a camper top over the bed of the truck. This simplified our loading and unloaded a great deal. The products we sell go into the back seat. During the holidays, we have so much product that we run out of room for both of us so we have to take a second car. This is a fortunate issue to have.

One of the people that we often see at markets has a 12-foot x 12-foot jewelry display. His tent has awnings on it so it looks much bigger than it actually is. His display is multi-tiered and elevated at eye level instead of people looking down at a table. Looking at his display, you would think that he needs a trailer to transport his display to the markets.

His products are displayed in old hard sided suitcases that he finds at garage sales. Not only does he use these old suitcases for display, but at the end of market, he packs his products in them, closes them up, and off he goes.

Because of his ingenuity, he actually transports his display and himself in a mid-size four-door sedan. His planning and preparation helps him save a lot of time and still have a very nice display.

On the other end of the spectrum is another guy we see at markets often. He makes and sells kettle corn, pork rinds, corn in a cup, seasonal fruits and lemonade. His setup is a monster. He arrives to markets at least 4 hours early to begin setting up. He transports his booth in a trailer behind his truck. Both his truck and trailer are packed full of his setup items.

Monica and I volunteered one day to help him tear down and load after a market. For me, a four-hour setup and two-hour tear down is far too much work for a 4- or 5-hour market.

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