How to Run a Pop-Open While Social Distancing

Many bakeries during this time are operating under reduced hours, or even have needed to shut down altogether. For bakeries that are unable to remain open during this time, we’ve heard from some bakery owners that a “pop-open” was a successful strategy on Easter. With a pop-open, similar to a pop-up shop, you’re only open for one day. 

Customers that have been craving your sweet treats or other baked goods get a chance to buy and your bakery gets a rush of revenue to help cover expenses. It creates a higher concentration of sales in one day instead of paying operational and labor costs for multiple days that might not break even. The limited open can generate interest and create scarcity, leading to more sales.  

Here’s how to run a pop-open. 

Limited Products

It’s most likely not feasible to offer your entire menu during a pop-open. Try to pick the items that are most popular at your bakery. Wherever you’d normally post your menu, make it clear that you’re operating with a specific menu for this event. 

You know your customers better than us, but it’s not unheard of for a person to order a custom cake and think they can pick it up within the hour. Communicate the items you’re selling so there’s no confusion on the day of your event. 

Designate a Pickup Area

It’s a good idea to designate an area for people to pick up their orders with as little contact as possible. If your bakery has dedicated parking spots, think about labeling the spots and adding signage with the phone number they are supposed to call. Numbering the spaces makes it easier to identify which orders go to which cars. You wouldn’t want someone to spout off their make and model only to realize you have no penchant for identifying cars. 

Open bakery

Multiple Phone Numbers

Your business phone line may have the option to hold multiple phone numbers on one phone. You can use this feature to attach a different phone number to each of your numbered parking spaces so you can make it even clearer where an order needs to go. Label the extra outgoing numbers with their coordinating parking spaces for simple identification.

If your business line doesn’t have that option, an alternative could be as simple as displaying different staff members’ phone numbers (if they’re comfortable).

Provide Clear Pickup Location Details

To avoid confusion, let your customers know the process for picking up their baked goods during your temporary open before they get there. Add it to your website as a pop-up or send it out on social media. Do what you can to make the curbside pickup process as smooth as possible. 

Upsell Gift Cards 

When someone places an order over the phone, ask if they’d like to purchase a gift card for the future. Gift cards are a great way to get some money in the door now and offer customers a way to support your bakery during the slow down. 

Offer Specials 

If you’re willing and able, consider offering discounts to healthcare staff or other essential workers. It could go a long way in cultivating loyalty and is a wonderful way to give back to the people on the front-line of the pandemic. 

Bakery specials

Use a Food Delivery Service

Offering your baked goods through a food delivery service can increase your reach and up your sales. Just make sure your goods are priced appropriately so you’re still making a profit after the delivery service takes their cut. Learn more about best practices for using a food delivery service

Stay Safe with Contactless 

Keep your workers and customers safe by implementing some basic safety measures, such as:

  • Wear gloves and masks
  • Sanitize your workspaces often
  • Change your gloves often
  • Don’t cross-contaminate. It does no good to wear gloves and then pick up your phone. Whatever germs were on your gloves are now on your phone.

Market, Market, Market

Marketing your pop-open is important, but it doesn’t have to be expensive. With some time, a little creativity, and the right tools, you can make sure everyone knows about your temporary open. Use all the marketing tools at your disposal, including:

Running a pop-open most likely won’t match what you’d normally receive in revenue, but it can still bring a boost in sales that you couldn’t see if your bakery were closed. Check out some more strategies to keep bakery sales going right now. 

Looking for a way to offer your online customers same-day pickup? BakeSmart Online has you covered! Check out our example site or schedule a BakeSmart demo today!

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