Unfortunately, not everything goes to plan, and if you're new to trading it's likely that you won't be fully prepared for all the eventualities and dramas you may face when you're trying to work on your market stall.
Remember a majority of our markets are outdoors and you will have to be prepared for all possible weather conditions. If you are more prepared you will be in a better position to deal with all eventualities that occur, and the more you'l lenjoy your day.
We have put together a list to help you prepare for most eventualities at markets.
Items needed will vary between each trader, and check recommendations from other market’s that you may attend, some may provide more/or less accessories, but you could use this as a guide to draw up your own checklist.
Basic Essentials - Items you MUST Carry to NNCG Markets
(These items are not optional & not including additional essentials required by food traders)
Trading Table (6ft) - we don't provide tables
First aid kit (if you aren't carrying one you should be - this isn't optional)
Vital Documents - Insurance, Risk Assessment, Gas Safety Certificate & EHO star rating if applicable
Business Cards - or some form of contact details to hand out
Sign/Banners – to allow customers to identify your business.
A simple float, change and a cash box
Hand sanatiser for youreslf and your customers
Face Mask, an additional faceshield is optional.
A light waterproof cover to place over stock when/if the rain reaches your table, especially important when you have goods that can be damaged by moisture, we do provide canopies however remember we work outside in Northern Ireland – We get sideways rain.
Canopies do not provide 100% protection from the elements sun, rain, wind! If your products or display can be damaged by the elemnts plan ahead, how eill you shade products from the sin, secure them on windy days and keep them dry when the rain reaches your table.
Bulldog clips/clamps (to secure items and your display)
Something to level your table if you're on uneven ground (it will happen everyone at some point)
Extra ground protection to set cardboard boxes of stock on when the ground is wet
Trolley to transport your stock (you will rarely be able to park beside your stall to unload)
Battery operated table lighting
Waterproof boxes for extra stock - the ground can get wet and ruin cardboard boxes.
Something to secure light items in windy weather.
Extra, warm clothing - ie hat, gloves, coat (a sunny morning can soon change) – Winter markets can be especially cold – layer up! A common comment is ‘I didn’t think it would be this cold’ - we can assure you, at times you’ll feel like you’re in the Artic, come prepared!
Mat/cardboard to stand on (helps keep the cold out)
Decent footwear which cushions your feet and is waterproof (the ground will often be wet). Heels or footwear that does not protect your toes are not recommended.
A change of footwear/socks when the weather is considerably wet
Personal Comforts & any required medication
Toilet Roll (in case the local public toilet isn't restocked during busy times)
Flask/snacks/sandwiches/water – If you’re lucky and have a busy day you might not get away from your stall to grab a bite to eat.
Notebook, Order book, Receipt book
Sellotape, Blu-tack, Scissors, pins, stapler
A bag for your rubbish
Card reader – to allow you to accept card payments.
Additional power source for mobile and/or card reader
Bubble wrap, Packaging, Bags
A fully charged mobile phone which contains ‘In Case of Emergency Contact Details’
Counterfeit Money detector pens
Spare price tags (for those end of day reductions)
Use these tips to prepare your own check list to tick off before you leave home.
The Chair.....It's really not recommended to sit down at a market stall as it can put customers off, but we all need a break sometimes, and some of you may have medical conditions or disabilities that need consideration, in these instances you should bring something to sit on and look after your own personal Health & Safety. (please remember we don’t provide seating.)
If a seat is a must for you preferably bring a tall stool, or something that you can use to take the weight of your feet but remain at a reasonable level for your customers, or if that’s not possible, consider sitting at the front of your stall.
The best practice is to always stand. Sure, if there is no one around you can sit for a minute or two, but if customers are about, you need to show you are attentive and ready to interact with them and serve. Whatever you bring, the more compact the better, as this too must fit into your vehicle.
Just remember - you've a reasonably short time at the market to make your sales, this is your time to sell, you’re not going to make any sales if you’re sitting reading a book.
If you still have room to pack your stock after all that we hope that you have an
enjoyable and safe day at the market!