Ohm Brew E-Liquid


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Top tips for ultimate vape store success

If you’re reading this on your phone while you’re walking over to open up your vape store, keys in hand, this blog post’s dedicated to you.

With the UK Government planning to make the UK smoke-free by 2030, more and more people are starting to consider making a move to vaping. It’s now estimated that about 6% of adults now regularly vape.

What does this mean if you have a vape store? It means now’s the time to get your face out there and get customers through the door.

We’ve put together this comprehensive guide to help you become the number one vape store in your village, town or even your city. Delete where applicable.

  1. Do your market research
  2. Consider your unique selling point
  3. Promote yourself like a boss
    • Local SEO is your friend
    • Know where you can and can’t advertise
    • Chase those testimonials
    • Get yourself on the radio and in the papers
    • Spend time on the marketing channels that work best for you
  4. Understand your outgoings
  5. Focus on customer service
  6. Create a welcoming atmosphere
  7. Keep evolving
  8. In summary
  9. And our final tip? Sell Ohm Brew

Ready to go? Let’s get down to business!

1. Do your market research

People from all walks of life vape. Your old friends from school that you occasionally meet up with at the pub? They vape. Your old boss where you used to work? He vapes? Your nan who has been smoking fifty cigs a day since you were wearing short trousers? She’s getting into vaping now, bless her heart.

This means you need to do your research and see who’s coming to your store as different target audiences will want different products. Don’t be afraid to ask your current customers what they want to see you sell. If people don’t buy from you just yet, what products would tempt them into your shop?

Consider seasonality in your market research too. You wouldn’t have a mulled wine in the middle of August – the same applies to the vape flavours you stock. Typically, people prefer fresh and fruity flavours to cool them down when the hot weather hits.

And before you ask, no, we don’t stock a mulled wine flavoured e-liquid… yet.

2. Consider your unique selling point

It’s estimated that there are now nearly 3,000 vape shops across the UK. To put it into context, there are almost three times as many vape stores in the country as there are Starbucks.

This means that you’ve got a lot of competition out there. Think about where your competitors are – there could be another vape store similar to yours just around the corner, ready to pounce on your customers. Scary stuff.

In the business world, companies need to define their unique selling point, or USP. This is essentially what you do that your competitors don’t.

Grab your favourite vape, pour yourself a strong cup of coffee and find a notepad. Write down a couple of ideas of what you do differently from all the other vape stores in your vicinity. For example:

You could stock a brand of vape liquid that nobody else near you does (check out our stockist page to see who sells Ohm Brew in your area)
You could offer promotional materials that help people understand more about vaping and the advantages it has over smoking
You could specialise in a particular demographic, like women or older people
You could provide stellar customer service and have the reviews and testimonials to prove it
You could offer delivery to people’s homes or workplaces or provide click and collect

When you’ve got a better idea of your USP, work it into your marketing and use it to get people into your store.

Speaking of marketing…

3. Promote yourself like a boss

Doing marketing is a lot like paying taxes. It’s a lot of work, and it can be incredibly frustrating, but it’s something we’ve all gotta do to stay in business.

We’ve covered some of the promotional tactics you can use in a previous article, but here are some additional ways you can get your brand out there and into people’s hearts (aww).

Local SEO is your friend

Local SEO is a special type of search engine optimisation, where you’re focusing on search engine results in your nearby area. That way, if someone searches for ‘vape stores near me’ or ‘vape shops in X’, you’re more likely to be in the number one spot.

One of the best ways to improve your chances of people finding your business is to set yourself up with a free Google Business Profile. You can use this to provide Google with additional information about your vape store and make it easier for people to get in touch with you.

There’s a similar online directory for Bing – Bing Places for Business – some people still use Bing, right?!

If you want to find out more about local SEO, there’s a great guide here. If you’re still not sure, there are plenty of digital marketing agencies that can help you out.

Know where you can and can’t advertise

Want to use pay-per-click advertising to promote your vape store. Unfortunately, you’re in for a hard time.

Google Ads and other social media platforms have strict policies in place for advertising tobacco products, meaning you can’t pay for advertising. It sucks, we know.

The good news? You can promote your vape shop and the wares you sell using local SEO and free social media posts as an alternative.

So take the budget you were going to spend on pay-per-click advertising and use it to create some awesome organic content instead. Job’s a good un!

Chase those testimonials

Social proof… it’s absolu-blinking-lutely massive.

Over 90% of customers read online reviews before buying a product or visiting a store. This means the more five-star reviews you can get, the better.

Good reviews don’t just get customers through the door – they help with local SEO too. If Google sees that your vape store is trusted by shoppers, you’ll get a sizable bump in the search engine results in return.

How can you increase the chances of a good review? A decent range of products and exceptional customer service – more about that later on. And of course, it doesn’t hurt to remind happy customers to leave some positive feedback on your Google Business Profile or review website of choice.

Get networking with people in your community

As Bon Jovi famously sang: no man (or woman) is an island.

When you’re running a store, it’s always a good idea to find contacts in your local community.

Find out who your councillors are and send an email saying hello. Connect with local journalists on Twitter and LinkedIn. If you want to go completely old-school, poke your head around the shop next door and ask if they want to go for a coffee sometime.

By reaching out to other local people, they’ll become aware of you and will be more likely to send good opportunities your way. That local councillor will give you a shout if a business grant becomes available. That journalist will let you know if they need a quote for an article they’re writing. The shop next door will send their friends who want to quit smoking your way.

Spend time on the marketing channels that work best for you

If you try to blog every day and have a presence on every single social media platform, you’re going to burn out and get fed up with marketing your vape store super-fast. It’s much better to focus on the marketing channels that will have the most significant impact on your business.

Think back to your target audience. What social media platforms do they use? What websites do they visit? What local news sites do they read? When you know the answers to these questions, you can work smarter, and not harder.

4. Understand your outgoings

Opening a store in the real world isn’t cheap. There’s rent to pay, utility bills to consider and staff payroll to sort.

Those eCommerce vaping companies don’t know they’re born, seriously.

If you have a brick-and-mortar store, it’s essential to have a solid understanding of your revenue and expenses, so you know how much profit you’re making and if you need to cut back. If finances aren’t your forte, now might be the time to get yourself an accountant.

A handy tip: it’s always worth contacting your local council to see if there are any grants for small businesses available to help make life easier. Make friends with your local business team, and they’ll keep you in the loop if anything comes up.

5. Focus on customer service

A lot of people are intimidated by vape stores, especially if they’re trying vaping for the first time. Nobody wants to be laughed out of the store by a haughty sales rep if they don’t know the difference between a vape pod or a vape mod.

However, if you can provide your prospective shoppers with a friendly and professional service, you’ll reap the rewards.

Here’s an interesting stat for ya. 72% of customers that have a positive customer experience will share it with six or more people. 13% of customers that have a bad customer experience will share it with 15 or more people.

The moral of this story? Make people happy and they’re more likely to come back, as well as tell their friends to visit.

Here are some top tips for providing service that people want to talk about:

  • Make sure your staff know your products inside out. What’s on offer, what products are best for people trying to reduce their nicotine intake, and what vape juices would they personally recommend? Bonus points if your staff vape themselves
  • If you sell accessories and different types of vapes, which are best for different kinds of people and lifestyles? This can be an excellent opportunity to make a few cheeky upsells too
  • Offer additional support for people who are looking to quit smoking. You could reach out to your local health service and see if they have any leaflets or information you can provide to customers
  • Provide service with a smile. If your idea of customer service is Jack Black in High Fidelity, you might need to do a bit of in-house training

6. Create a welcoming atmosphere

Do your customers run in, buy their vape juice and quickly dash out of the store? If the answer is yes, you might need to consider how your store looks.

A couple of years ago, all vape stores looked pretty much the same. Boring, clinical and uninspiring. Meh. However, as time has moved on, vape stores have dared to get a little more creative.

By creating a friendly, warm space that people want to visit, customers will spend more time in your store and, most importantly, more cash. This is especially true if you have a lot of competition – an inviting store could win you more custom.

Think about:

  • The colour scheme you use – the colours you use can say a lot about your business
  • The décor on the walls – if your vape store walls look a lot like a teenager’s bedroom, you might need a redesign
  • The flooring – are you #teamcarpet or #teamlaminatefloor?
  • The music you play – a carefully curated Spotify playlist can draw people into your store
  • The lighting you use – bright and cheerful or low and ambient?
  • The product display units as well as how your products are promoted
  • The seating available – chairs and sofas can add a nice finishing touch
  • The outdoor space if you have it. Do you want to provide outdoor seating so people can vape in the fresh air?

Consider the audience you want to appeal to. For example, if you want to target people in their 30s and 40s, you can’t go wrong with cosy sofas, calming colours and lush plants. We’d totally want to hunker down in that store.

7. Keep evolving

Did you know that Nintendo has been in business for over 120 years?

At this point you might be saying, ‘hang on, computer consoles haven’t been around for that long’.

And you know what? You’d be right. Back in the day, Nintendo used to sell playing cards. However, when the demand for playing cards fell, the company decided to move into video games, and the rest is history.

Are we expecting you to sell Nintendo Switches alongside your vape liquids? Whatever tickles your pickle. However, the point we’re trying to make is that you need to regularly make changes to your business model to increase the chances of success.

See what products are selling. Keep an eye on your competitors to see what they’re doing. Stay one step ahead of local and national government legislation in case you need to move in a new direction.

You’ve got this. Trust us.

In summary…

It’s been a long article, and we’ve got totally emotional. Sob.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this guide to taking your vape store to the next level. We’ll keep updating this article with new information and links, so be sure to pop back and revisit from time to time.

Here’s a reminder of what we’ve talked about.

  1. Research your target audience and the products you want to sell
  2. Identify what makes you stand out amongst everyone else
  3. Market your vape store locally
  4. Know how much money you’re spending
  5. Dedicate yourself to providing the best customer service
  6. Make your vape shop a nice place to be
  7. Pivot if you have to

And our final tip? Sell Ohm Brew

You didn’t think we’d let you get this far without a shameless product plug, did you?

Our products are made for vapers, by vapers. You can believe us when we say we know what your customers want, because we’ve been there ourselves.

From our decadent white chocolate and cranberry pistachio e-liquid to our lush lemon and lime CBD blend, there’s something for everyone.

Not only do you get our eternal thanks and gratitude when you stock our products, but you also get a shoutout on our stockist’s page. Don’t say that we don’t spoil you!

Get in touch if you’d like to find out more about becoming a stockist.

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