Tips for Choosing a Vendor Tent for Fairs and Markets

Tips for Choosing a Vendor Tent for Fairs and Markets

We share key buying considerations with you that will help you pick a tent that will keep you comfortable during a long day selling and encourage shoppers to browse and buy.

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Are you in the market for a canopy tent for a festival, fair or farmer’s market? The pop-up tent you choose is going to have a huge impact on your experience and that of potential customers. For that reason, it is critical to choose the right tent. Below, we share key buying considerations with you that will help you pick a tent that will keep you comfortable during a long day selling and encourage shoppers to browse and buy.

1. The right dimensions

When you are choosing a vendor tent, it needs to be:

  • The right size and shape to fit in your vendor space.
  • Large enough to accommodate your stock and you and your customers with a little elbow room to spare.

A cramped tent will limit shoppers, and might even discourage them from entering. So, keep that in mind.

2. The right color (usually white)

Hypothetically, you can choose any color for a vendor tent, but we recommend white. Why? For two reasons:

  • Dark colors will absorb heat, which is a problem if your tent is outdoors in the hot sun. A black tent may look nice, but you will end up regretting it after a day baking and sweating inside.
  • Other colors, even light ones, create a visual problem. As light shines through the fabric, the tint from the material falls over your merchandise. That can make it hard for customers to assess colors accurately.

For these reasons, you should just stick with white in most scenarios. Plus, white will let the largest amount of light through, making it easier for buyers to see what you have for sale.

3. Straight legs

There are two types of legs you can find on pop-up canopy tents: straight legs and tapering legs.

While the tapering legs may have their appeals, straight legs are going to work better for a vendor tent. You’ll find it easier to accommodate your merchandise and your customers since you will have more usable space.

4. Sturdy materials

It is very important that your pop-up vendor tent feature strong materials like sturdy steel and robust fabric that resists rips and tears. If you get a high-quality tent that is built to last, you can use it for years before you need to repair or replace it.

5. Heavy, long stakes (consider upgrading them)

The stakes you use for your canopy tent are among the prime factors determining the stability of the canopy tent. Preferably, your tent should include heavy-duty stakes. But if it does not, do yourself a favor and purchase some aftermarket stakes that can hold your tent in place. This is most important if you expect to encounter wind.  

6. Side walls

Speaking of wind (and rain), side walls are a great feature for a vendor tent. While you may be able to get away without them in some climates, in others, they are necessary to protect your merchandise, your customers, and yourself from the elements.

Plus, side walls have another benefit, which is that they help you keep an eye on what is going on around you. It is much less likely someone will sneak up along the side of your tent and steal from you if you have walls.

7. Quick and easy setup

When you arrive at your event venue, you are not going to want to spend a ton of time and energy getting set up. And there is a good chance you will need to be able to set up your canopy tent completely on your own. So, keep that in mind when you are choosing one. Make sure it is equally easy and fast to take down and pack up.

8. Excellent portability

On a related note, you should get a pop-up canopy tent that is easy to transport from place to place. Obviously, it will need to fit in the back of your vehicle. But it should also come with a convenient carrying bag so you can transport it on foot without trouble (wheels are a plus as well).

Fairgrounds are often sprawling, and your vendor site could be on the far side of the grounds from the parking lot. The less fatiguing it is to carry the tent, the better. Lightweight (but strong) materials will help with this as well.

9. Waterproofing

It may sometimes be raining when you are at a festival or farmer’s market, and you do not want to be caught off-guard and unprotected. That means that you should invest in a waterproof pop-up canopy tent. You will also want to take some extra steps to improve its waterproofing. See our post “How to Prevent Water Leaking Into a Pop-Up Canopy Tent” for some ideas.

10. Air circulation

While you want to keep water out of your pop-up canopy vendor tent, you do not want to do so at the expense of airflow.

There are a couple of features you can look for to help improve air circulation in your tent:

  • Vents. These will reduce billowing when it gets windy, which makes your tent more stable. They also will allow warm air that rises to exit the tent more easily, which will help to regulate the temperature underneath.
  • Windows. If you get side walls for your canopy tent, look for ones that include windows you can open and close. That way, if it is not raining but you want the walls up, you can get some air moving through them.

Getting the Right Canopy Tent is Essential for Vendors

As a vendor at a farmer’s market, festival or fair, you need a pop-up canopy tent that will keep you cool, protect you and your merchandise from sun and rain, and make for a pleasant shopping experience for customers.

By purchasing a sturdy tent with the right dimensions, materials and features, you can make each day at the fair or market a more enjoyable and successful one.

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