7 tips to capture your share of Tempe's tourists


Tempe Festival of the Arts
photo by Tim Trumble

Between snowbirds and holiday visitors, tons of tourists will be passing through Tempe over the next few months. Taking advantage of the spike in tourism will help your business thrive. 

The benefits to hotels, motels, and restaurants from tourism are easy to spot, but what about local shops and stores? Here’s a list of tips to help you optimize your return from tourism.

1. The Chamber website offers members the opportunity to link to their businesses in our Business Directory. Many visitors will use this directory to find places to stay, eat, shop, and entertainment ideas. Make sure your profile is up to date! 

2. Identify what makes your business or products special. Do you offer local flavor? Items that are made by local artisans or craftsmen? Locally produced food products, or books featuring information on the area? Many tourists are mesmerized by and lured to shop where they can buy items that have been produced locally.

3. Have you created a welcoming storefront? Walk into your business with the eyes of someone who has not seen it before. Is it laid out well and does it have a pleasant scent? Signs welcoming tourists and advertising specials can help draw trade into any business. These simple changes can make a major impact on sales. Don't be discouraged if they leave without purchasing anything the first time. They may be window shopping today, but come back later and bring even more friends with them if they like what they see.

4. Take time to meet other business owners and their employees in the area. Tourists often rely on service staff at a local hotel or restaurant to provide them with information on where to shop. Attend our next Business After Hours to make these connections. 

5. Have you noticed something on your own travels that you wish was available in your area, or that drew you into a business? Adding a new line can help you capture your share of tourists as well as bringing in more local customers.

6. Consider your online presence. Is your website easy to navigate and does it link to a social media page? Advertise or at least create a page on social media and update it regularly. The Chamber offers affordable advertising options for our website. Take advantage of offline marketing, including flyers and ads too.

7. Most importantly, offer guests a friendly welcome. Make certain your staff does as well. Tourists and local shoppers gravitate to businesses that are welcoming, clean, and provide value for their dollar.