For home improvement centers with popular pet product niches, in-store activities for pets and their owners are a great way to promote new products and show loyal customers with pets some appreciation. Pet activities held during slow traffic times can also help boost sales—don’t forget, in 2015, U.S. pet owners spent $37.33 billion on pet food and supplies, according to the American Pet Products Association. Below are two ideas for drawing in new four-legged friends and their two-legged shoppers.
Fashion Show: For retailers who carry pet costumes, clothing and/or stylish collars and leashes, a doggie fashion show complete with a catwalk can draw a crowd of pet lovers and owners. Invite loyal customers and their pets to serve as the models. Ask product reps to get involved, too. Timing the event in conjunction with a new product line launch or a costume-centric holiday such as Halloween or Christmas can also add to the festivities.
Hiking with Pets Workshop: For retailers who offer hiking and outdoor activity gear, a pet workshop may be ideal. Taking pets into the great outdoors is gaining interest with many owners. As part of the workshop, retailers can offer demos on the many products that are useful out on the trail, such as:
- Dog backpacks like the Approach™ Pack by Ruffwear
- Paw protection booties
- Pet carriers like Outward Hound’s Pooch Pouch Front Carrier
For information on hiking with dogs, check out this article by REI Co-Op.
When planning any pet-friendly activity, keep in mind these important tips:
- Insist that all pets be on leashes.
- Have plenty of supplies for cleanup, such as poop bags and paper towels.
- Provide bowls with fresh water and small treats.
- Provide product-related discounts and giveaways.