Shipping Container Pop Up Shops: Embracing a Growing Trend
Walk around almost any major city in the world today and you will almost certainly run into a shipping container. Not as a box being used to carry products to warehouses on the outskirts (though that does happen), but in different guises, such as market stalls, coffee bars and even marketing units. Why? Shipping containers are sturdy, secure metal boxes that are ripe for conversion into almost anything you can imagine!
In this article we will look at shipping container pop up shops that can be dropped into a city centre with a lot less planning and bureaucracy than you would encounter in setting up as a permanent, fixed unit.
Here’s one we made earlier…
Here at Gateway Container Sales we have been converting shipping containers into different units for many years. Seven years ago we supported a Brisbane coffee company by converting a shipping container into a drive-thru coffee shop.
You can see in the picture how it looks – with the firm’s branding and under an old petrol station’s shelter it is just perfect for people to drop by for a caffeine fix on the go. With the current pandemic, where takeaway retail is permitted, such a unit could be financially viable as it keeps the customer and your staff at a safe distance, while allowing mobile app ordering or contactless purchases to take place.
Not just little guys
European groceries retailer Aldi ran a campaign pushing its award-winning Aldi Wine brand in the UK. Placing a branded shipping container in London’s tech centre, the borough of Shoreditch, Aldi was able to market its fine wines to the tech crowd. They added a leading sommelier who helped people choose a selection of wines according to their needs and budgets.
This is a classic case of high quality marketing. Putting a specific pop up in a business district, where people may not have thought to visit the discount supermarket chain for their high quality product, the pop up shop shows them what they might discover. As with so many campaigns, careful planning can yield excellent results with a relatively small investment. In going for the young tech crowd, so Aldi was approaching a market that may have otherwise turned their noses up at their wine.
Buy a car…
Now one of the biggest car companies in the world, Tesla went about getting traction in the midrange and luxury car market by being different. One of their ways was in refusing to sell their electric cars like their gas guzzling rivals. They don’t rely on dealers but company-paid sales staff.
This is why a shipping container pop up store has been so useful for the firm. As with Aldi, it enabled Tesla to reach out to new markets by presenting their cars and brand to new audiences simply with their presence.
A classic example of where shipping container pop up shops have been successful has been in outdoor markets. Here in Australia, Melbourne has dropped 26 containers into place as semi-permanent market stalls in the historic String Bean Alley of Victoria Market.
Tenants can be long term or short term but benefit from the security that the containers provide outside of opening times, as well as the space they afford for the tenants to sell their wares to passing customers.
Advantages of shipping container pop up retail units
Here are seven reasons that shipping containers can make great pop up retail units. They are:
- Attractive – if branded and targeted at the right audience
- Advertising – a means of getting your brand directly among a target market
- Mobile – so a standard container truck can lift them, move them and drop them off at your new temporary site
- Secure – allowing you to leave valuable items on site when you’re not there
- Relatively low cost – meaning better ROI
- Sustainable – using something that might otherwise rust away in a stack after its five years of original use transporting goods (and often having a good 15 years left in them after)
- Recyclable – if it is for a single event you could sell it back to the company that converted it, for them to reuse for a different client and campaign.
Interested? Give us a call at Gateway Container Sales today to discuss your needs!