How to Use Gourmet Popcorn to Boost Your Holiday Retail Sales
Holiday Food Gifts Benefit Businesses
The holiday season is fast approaching and that means shoppers are hitting the stores to find the perfect gift. Whether stores realize it or not, more than 90% of Americans say they intend to gift or share food gifts like chocolate or candy during the holiday season. (Source: Fooddive.com) What does this mean for stores? The food gift spending category shouldn’t be ignored but rather embraced. By selling food gifts, stores can take advantage of this opportunity to boost holiday sales. Gourmet popcorn is the perfect food gift to add to your store for the upcoming holiday season. Follow this guide to learn more about how and where gourmet popcorn can be most beneficial to your business.
Locations that Can Benefit by Selling Gourmet Popcorn
Selling gourmet popcorn can be a wonderful addition to any store. Here are just some examples of locations that can benefit from gourmet popcorn:
Often people are not excited about going to the grocery store. However, adding gourmet popcorn could change their minds. Having a sweet shop that contains gourmet popcorn in your grocery store can be a great way to increase the appeal of your location. By adding a homey feeling with tasty treats and enticing aromas, customers will look forward to their next visit. Be sure to have samples because customers often shop when they are hungry. Being able to try the product may result in them being more likely to buy it. If you make the experience of being in your store more pleasant than others, you’ll have an advantage over competitors for this segment.
Ice Cream Shops
Ice cream and gourmet popcorn make a great pair. Both are versatile and can be mixed and matched for all kinds of flavor combinations.
Try caramel corn as a topping. Caramel corn has been a popular treat since the 1800s and there’s a reason people still love it. The unmistakable aroma and delicious sugary crunch conjure happy childhood memories, ultimately creating a happy experience for your customers.
You can even incorporate gourmet popcorn into your ice cream desserts or have decorative tins full of popcorn available for people to buy as gifts. Doing this helps your ice cream shop become a year-round business instead of seasonal.
If you already sell candy or nuts, gourmet popcorn makes the perfect complement to help boost your holiday sales. Imagine pairing popcorn with your existing products to create attractive themed gift baskets. Popcorn is also ideal for packaging in individual party favors for school or other functions. It is very versatile. There are setup options from kiosks to complete sweet shops, so you can find the best program to meet your location’s specific needs.
Food gifts have become increasingly popular because they are convenient and enjoyable. Gourmet popcorn is not only easy to make, but it also is practical to sell in nearly any retail venue. It can be prepackaged and has a strong shelf life. By adding food gifts such as gourmet popcorn to your gift shop, your sales can increase a significant amount. Gift shops are meant to be the place that your customers can find the perfect gift for anyone. And with a wide variety of flavor options, you can make customized gifts they will love!
Gourmet Popcorn Gift Ideas
Gourmet popcorn is known as a thoughtful and appreciated gift. Here are some ideas that can help you decide what types of gifts are right for you!
Find flavors that are compelling to your customer base. Buffalo Breath is one that capitalizes on the love of wings. And who wouldn't want to try Bacon Popcorn? Seasonal favorites are great sellers too, like Pumpkin Spice. You can also use your store’s location to determine which gourmet popcorn flavor may be the most popular. For example, if your store is located in Ohio try selling Cincinnati Style Chili flavored popcorn. This regional favorite flavor would also make a perfect gift for someone who is homesick. Try different flavors to see which suits your store’s customer base. This will help create a personal connection between you and your customer, as well as make their shopping experience more meaningful. (Click here for more flavor ideas.)
Customized Tins and Gift Baskets
Gourmet popcorn offers a variety of setup arrangements. One way to package the product is in gift tins. The great thing about gift tins is that you can customize the outside design and the flavors inside. You can sell a “classic” gift tin that contains traditional flavors such as butter, cheddar, and caramel. Or create a gift tin for a certain occasion, like a Christmas-themed gift tin that has a holiday design and contains red and green popcorn. Another popular occasion a gourmet popcorn tin would be perfect for is birthdays. This tin can be filled with birthday cake popcorn. Or if your customer needs a gift tin that would work for any occasion then create an Around the World themed tin. This gift tin can have a world design and contain flavors such as Mediterranean herb and wasabi popcorn.
This same idea can be used for gift baskets as well. Your store can sell popcorn gift baskets such as a cheese lovers basket filled with different cheese flavored popcorn or an off-to-college basket perfect for long nights of studying and snacking. For more popcorn gift basket examples, check out our 8 creative popcorn basket ideas.
Perfect for the holidays, popcorn cakes make a special shareable treat! As a no-bake alternative, they are so easy to make. What's fun is that they can be completely customized with flavors and toppings. Use red and green for a festive Christmas cake. Or go with popular flavors like Cookies and Cream or Chocolate Peanut Butter. Popcorn cakes are unique and will capture your customers' attention. Learn more and get the recipe in our Popcorn Cake blog.
Beer and Wine Pairings
Another gift idea your customers will love is beer or wine paired with gourmet popcorn. For example, a blonde ale beer goes perfectly with white cheddar popcorn. While merlot medium red wine tastes great with Mediterranean herb popcorn. Pairing alcohol and popcorn together create a fun duo anyone would love as a gift.
For more popcorn pairing ideas download our beer and wine popcorn pairing eBooks.
How to Display Gourmet Popcorn
Properly displaying your gourmet popcorn allows you to make it even more appealing to customers. Here are a few suggestions that can help generate more sales.
When displaying gourmet popcorn, it is important to create a full sensory experience for your customers. Gourmet popcorn has a delicious aroma and great taste. A way to tempt your customers to buy gourmet popcorn is by offering taste-testing samples. By doing this you allow your customers to experience the gourmet popcorn with their senses-taste, touch, sight, and smell. Not to mention your store will smell delicious as well.
Create seasonal displays that promote featured flavors of popcorn. Not only is this fitting for the holiday season, but it can also be used throughout the year for other holidays or occasions like the Super Bowl, Valentine’s Day, Easter, and more.
Another way to prompt impulse buying from your customers is by being strategic with your placement of gourmet popcorn. Place easy-to-grab bags of popcorn next to the registers at checkout. This will tempt your customers to add another item to their purchase while checking out.
Gourmet Popcorn Profit Potential
Gourmet popcorn has proven to be a highly profitable item. With low costs to produce and profit margins averaging 70-80%, you have the ability to set retail prices that are appealing to your customer and favorable for your business.
Take a look at this example based on a 2.7 oz. serving of caramel corn.
Gourmet Popcorn Cost / Profit
|Profit Per Serving Sold
* Costs and profit projections are an estimate and for informational purposes only. These projections are not a guaranteed return on your investment. Cost does not include freight, shipping costs, or other miscellaneous supplies.
For more ways to help your store succeed this holiday season download our Holiday Gift Guide eBook!