Weekly Download: How to capture your share of our tourists

Tourism is a major industry and capturing your share of our local tourists will help your business thrive. The Chamber encourages you to stop in and learn more about our advertising tools that can help you succeed. Local sights, conventions, and activities draw visitors from across the country to the area each year, making it a market you should not overlook.

The benefits to hotels, motels, and restaurants from tourism are easy to spot, but what about local shops and stores? We have designed some tips to help you optimize your return from tourism.

How to Capture Your Share of Our Tourists

The Chamber website offers members the opportunity to link to their businesses. Many visitors will visit our site to find places to stay, eat, shop, and entertainment ideas. Presenting your business on the site will help you reach more potential customers.

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 items that have been produced locally.

Have you created a welcoming storefront? Signs welcoming tourists and advertising specials can help draw trade into any business.

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. Networking is an excellent opportunity for business growth.

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.

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. It may take a while to grow an audience, but as long as you are providing interesting information, you should see growth.

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? If not, a few 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.

Take advantage of offline marketing, including flyers and ads.

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.

Increased tourism brings money to the community and provides an opportunity for your business to capitalize. We encourage you to contact us and learn more ideas on improving your share of this expanding market.