So now you’ve got products to sell and the permits to do so legally — where to go? Even if there’s only one flea market in your town, this may not be as cut-and-dry as it seems. Keep reading for five important considerations to keep in mind as you decide where to establish your flea market business.
Traffic – One of the first things you will want to look at when scoping out a potential flea market is the traffic it attracts, both in cars and on foot. Is the market located on a main road where it attracts people driving by, or is it well-known enough that it generates its own traffic? For the foot traffic, are the available booths in areas where people are walking by, or are the only open options in a shadowed corner? While there will always be some shoppers that inspect every corner of a market, you will need more than that to keep your business afloat, and impulse buyers need to be able to see your wares easily as they stroll by.
Indoor vs. Outdoor – Most parts of the country experience either harsh winters or sweaty summers, and some areas are unlucky enough to have both. While outdoor booths can be much cheaper, the value of an indoor booth when bad weather hits is priceless.
Competition – Take the time to wander through each flea market that you’re considering. Is anyone selling items similar to yours? If so, are their prices ones you can beat while still making a profit? If their booth seems to attract a weekly crowd, they may have loyal fans that even lower prices won’t pull away. If someone at a flea market is selling similar items to yours, it may be worth the drive to go to a market farther away, which brings us to…
Driving Distance – With fluctuating gas prices, driving distance is a major player in this choice. However, if you have a lot of competition and no good booth openings at your local flea market, it is well worth it to check out the markets in surrounding cities. In many cases, you may be surprised at how much a change of venue can impact your income. A different city may not just mean less competition; it may mean you have a whole different demographic to market to that may be more receptive to your business model.
Security – We all want to feel safe, and often that’s a little harder when large amounts of cash are involved. By its very nature, a flea market business will likely mean a lot of cash will be flowing through your business; not only the amount you sell but the small bills you bring in for change when you open up. Some flea markets employ security guards, while others work with their local police force to ensure seller safety. Additionally, if you will be keeping a large stock, you may want to be able to leave your shop set up throughout the week while the flea market is closed, but not every flea market has the locks and security system to make that a viable option. Talk to the flea market manager to find out what kind of security you can expect there.