Palmer Retail Solutions Blog

Kiosk Products: Why Some Retail Items Don't Warrant an Entire Store

Posted by Kathy Heil on Apr 13, 2017 2:10:47 PM

kiosk productsThinking about opening a retail store? Sometimes a kiosk is the best way to go! There are many products that simply do not warrant an entire store, but they can be a match made in heaven when it comes to kiosk sales.

Why are some items wrong for a full-size store?

Running an entire store is more expensive than operating a kiosk, on multiple fronts. The larger the space, the higher your costs for rent and overhead. You have to hire more people, so payroll costs are higher. Some products are priced too low or are too specialized to generate that kind of revenue, but they can be ideal kiosk products.

Sometimes, items are not ready for prime time. What if you have a brand new product and you aren’t sure it will be as popular as you hope? Kiosks are ideal for beta testing, whereas opening a new full-on store is premature — and could be an expensive mistake.

Sometimes, items are too seasonal. With a kiosk, you can capture holiday sales or appeal to summer tourists, then close up shop. A kiosk is also ideal for items that relate to a special event, like the big game.

Specialty retail is trending in a big way

This is great news for kiosk entrepreneurs because kiosks are the ultimate in specialty retail. Your kiosk will excel if you stick to a narrow product line but go deep in selection, something traditional stores can't afford to do.

Impulse items and interactive products tend to be the most successful in luring potential customers. Other proven kiosk products include:

  • Grab-and-go food items, prepared on the spot or pre-packaged
  • Gourmet anything
  • Accessories, from cell phone covers to wearables such as scarves, belts, and socks to sports accessories like lanyards to secure sunglasses or keys
  • Gifts
  • Toys and stickers for kids or baby items
  • Hand-crafted items from soap and candles to small art pieces, knit caps, etc.
  • Casual jewelry, either hand-made or commercial
  • Eyewear (non-prescription readers, sunglasses, etc.)
  • Health and beauty products from cosmetics, lotions and fragrances to nutritional supplements
  • Fun stationery, gift and greeting cards, notecards, etc.
  • DIY on-the-spot customizable items from T-shirts to coffee cups

What is the primary demographic of your mall’s patrons?

Just because a product doesn’t warrant an entire store does not mean it’s perfect for every kiosk. A successful mall will put thousands of people past your kiosk, but are they people likely to buy your product? The cutest toy or baby kiosk ever imagined won’t make it unless the demographics aim toward families with little ones.

So when deciding between a kiosk or a storefront, ask yourself: Does this product warrant an entire store? If it's a specialized impulse item located right under the nose of your demographic, a kiosk could get you more bang for your buck.

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Topics: Kiosks

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