A few practical farmers market ideas can steer customers straight to your booth.

And I know how to get them moooving! Sorry, I couldn’t resist the pun. But I do have some easy tips to make your farmers market booth the envy of your neighbors.

If this is the first time you’ve tried to sell items at a farmers market or if you’ve never been to one, let this blog be your guide. These events draw plenty of people and can put a sizeable amount of money in your pocket.

A farmers market can also be a real learning experience, especially for rookie vendors. You get to see firsthand what other sellers are growing, crafting and creating. New trends arrive each year. You’ll also meet new people and engage with others who have similar interests.

Sound like fun? It really is. It’s also a great way to make money. Let’s get started!

What is a farmers market?

A farmers market is a continual public event where farmers and others sell their products directly to customers.

Many farmers markets take place at county fairgrounds, in downtown settings or along country roads. It’s not unusual to have dozens or even hundreds of vendors and tables lined with baked goods, fresh vegetables and handcrafted items.

Most farmers markets are held throughout the summer. Some of the busiest times are later in the season when many fresh vegetables such as sweet corn and tomatoes are harvested. However, there are numerous state and national organizations that host farmers markets all year long!

Items to sell at farmers markets

vegetables graphic

If you’ve never been to a farmers market or are interested in setting up a booth, here are some items typically sold at these events:

  • Freshly picked vegetables and herbs
  • Eggs
  • Home baked items
  • Raw honey
  • Homemade jams and jellies
  • Handmade soaps
  • Handmade jewelry
  • Locally designed greeting cards
  • Soy candles
  • Homemade salsa
  • Unique pottery pieces
  • House plants
  • Fresh cut flowers
  • Wood crafts
  • Knit or crocheted items

10 farmers market ideas to boost sales

Every farmers market booth or table should be a refreshingly different experience for customers. You can make yours unique and inviting by planning ahead and adding a spark of creativity.

Here are a few farmers market ideas and tips for your farmers market booth:

1. Hand out customized giveaways

customized tote bags for a farmers market

I have two solid reasons for suggesting you give customers a freebie when they stop by your booth:

No. 1: Everyone likes free things!

No. 2: By placing your name and contact information on a giveaway, you’ll make it easier for people to find your booth next time. You’ll also eliminate the need for business cards.

One of the most popular giveaway items at farmers markets are promotional tote bags. Unfortunately, some vendors place customer purchases in cheap, plastic bags that often rip or are too small to fill.

Our high-quality and affordable Polypropylene Budget Shopper Tote is popular at farmers markets. It’s like an extra set of hands for customers who find bountiful produce and unexpected treasures to bring home.

Another great giveaway item at farmers markets are printed garden items. Customized seed packets and seeded papers are one of the most appropriate and memorable gifts to give out. They are also high on the list of eco-friendly promotional products. Add a copy of our Garden Planting Guide to your giveaway gifts.

2. Keep your booth clean and tidy

Make a point to periodically walk around your booth to ensure it’s clean and organized. Visitors won’t stay long if your displays are a mess or your tables are dirty.

Keep a trash can nearby for yourself and potential customers to use. Don’t let it overflow and quickly remove anything with an odor.

Have a container or two of custom hand sanitizer available. If you are giving out food samples or have hands-on displays, be sure to stock up on printed antibacterial wipes for quick cleanups.

3. Have items easily in reach

Be sure to stack displayed items carefully so customers can easily and safely reach everything. Have appropriate kitchen tools handy such as our custom Grip Flip and Scoop Tool and spatulas if needed.

Keep larger and more breakable items away from the table’s edge; large crowds of people and small children could knock them over.

4. Use adequate signage

customized banner advertising a farmers market

Some items at farmers markets are self-explanatory and need minimal signage. But if you have unique items or a large selection of products, a customized hanging banner or retractable banner stand might be helpful. They can be used to identify items and prices.

I also recommend placing small, identifying signs in front of food items to warn people who may have allergies.

Are you organizing a farmers market? Help customers find your event by hanging mesh banners that are built for outdoor weather. Double-sided banners are also a great idea to capture traffic in both directions.

5. Offer recipes and how-tos when selling food

Customers are more likely to grab the food items you’re selling if they know how to prepare or cook them! Have flyers printed with food prep directions and tried-and-true recipes.

You can also give people helpful information via customized giveaways. Just print your web page address or social media site on cheap promotional products and they can access the instructions as needed.

6. Brand with personalized table covers

customized table cover at a farmers market

Give your table a professional and tidy look with custom table covers in your brand colors. Reusable table covers with your name will help customers find you more easily at every farmers market you attend.

Most printed table covers at Totally Promotional are made with liquid-repellent fabric to keep them looking good all season long! Spills wipe up easily.

Not sure how big your table will be? Order our versatile 6-ft. custom tablecloth, which also works well on an 8-ft table.

Learn how to order custom tablecloths and how to keep your table cover wrinkle-free.

7. Give growing tips for flowers and produce

Share your knowledge and experience with plants to increase sales and engagement. You’ll win customers’ trust by giving out germination and harvesting advice to new and seasoned gardeners.

Consider demonstrating how to plant or transplant vegetables and flowers. You’ll attract a lot more buyers to your booth!

8. Be friendly but not pushy

It’s good to make eye contact and send a friendly “hello” as shoppers pass by. But don’t be overly aggressive in your sales pitch. No one likes to be pressured.

Customers will readily stop by if your farmers market booth is attractive and there are plenty of interesting things to look at.

9. Wear custom T-shirts

man and woman wearing farmers market logo t-shirts at a farmers market

The organizers of every farmers market should be easily identifiable by vendors and visitors. This can be easily accomplished with custom tees in your theme colors. Simply place the name of the farmers market on the front and back of each shirt for ultimate visibility.

It’s also a good idea to have T-shirts made for everyone helping in your booth. You can order as few as six of our bestselling Gildan® Heavy Cotton™ T-Shirts in sizes small to 5XL. This shirt has a classic fit that washes up nicely and can be worn at every farmers market throughout the summer!

10. Offer discounts to return shoppers

Want to get an advantage over other sellers at farmers markets? Give customers a reason to come back!

A few ideas to ensure return customers:

  • Place discount coupons in each shopper’s bag.
  • Offer buy-one-get-one deals at your booth.
  • Ask visitors to sign up for a contest drawing. Give away a customized product such as a garden tool. Use the names and emails you gather to grow your mailing list.

What permits do I need to sell at a farmers market?

Vendors typically need a permit to sell items directly to customers. The type of permit or license you need will depend on the products you intend to sell.

Contact the organizer or manager of the farmers market to find out what is required at the local level. Laws can differ from one town or county to the next.

It’s also a good idea to contact your state Department of Agriculture to find out if there are any special requirements or forms to file before the event.

Order early for customized promo items!

customizable t-shirts with farmers market designs

I’m confident these farmers market ideas will bring you success. Most of these suggestions take just a small amount of preparation.

Place your order as soon as possible if you need custom T-shirts, hats, printed banners and other essentials for your booth. Farmers market days will be here sooner than you think!

Also, consider ordering extra personalized giveaways in bulk quantities to save money. You’ll need them for all the farmers markets in your future!

beat the heat with max brand exposure shop hand fans

Shelley Grieshop is a former newspaper journalist who earned more than a dozen Associated Press awards for her in-depth research and writing skills. In May 2016, she joined Totally Promotional as a creative writer. She currently writes company blogs about branding, marketing, logos, wedding planning and much more. One of her life goals is to teach people when to use hyphens and apostrophes.

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