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Can Pokémon Go Increase Traffic to Your Small Business?

By Garrett Spence   |    July 28, 2016   |    11:44 AM

How Small Business Can Use Pokémon Go to Increase Sales

Even if you don’t know the difference between a Jigglypuff and a Charmander, you’ve likely heard all about Pokémon Go by now. You’ve seen people walking down the sidewalk and through parks, noses buried deep in their phones as they try to catch Pokémon.

It’s a fun game, to be sure, but did you know that it can also help your small business?

It’s true, and businesses around the world are capitalizing on this fun new app. If you want to get in on the action, don’t stop reading — here’s how Pokémon Go can increase traffic to your small business.

Benefit from your proximity to PokéStops and PokéGyms

PokéStops and PokéGyms are two of the game’s most important features. You can’t become one of these places as a business, but if you’re located near one your business could benefit.

PokéStops are hubs where players (called Trainers in the game) can get items that can help them while playing the game. PokéGyms are where Trainers go to pit their collected Pokémon against Pokémon from other Trainers in “battle.”

These spots are generally in public places and other areas where members of the community gather, like:

  • Libraries
  • Parks
  • Train and bus stations
  • Public beaches and lakes
  • Iconic statues

Make sure your business has a Yelp listing

Yelp is making it easier for small business to cash in on the Pokémon Go trend. The review-hosting website and app have added a special filter that will help users identify PokéStops near them.

Yelp’s Will Cole summed up the process quite simply when speaking with TechRadar, "Simply search for a type of local business, swipe through the filter options at the top, hit PokéStop Nearby, and voilà! You can now find places to simultaneously run errands AND stock up on materials needed to catch that Eevee you've been eyeing.”

Even if you don’t know what an Eevee is, you should check that your business has an active Yelp listing. One Manhattan restaurant near a Pokéstop, L’inizio Pizza Bar, went as far as creating Pokémon-themed pizzas. The pizzas were a hit, and the investment to the restaurant was quite low: They spent $10 on lure modules and ended up with a 30% increase in food and drink sales over the weekend.

Pokémon Lures

If you want to really participate in the Pokémon Go craze and your business is near a PokéStop, consider purchasing lures. For approximately $2 per hour, you can buy lure modules that can be installed in a PokéStop. The modules are active for 30 minutes, and they turn the stop into a beacon that attracts players and Pokémon to the spot.

Take advantage of the increased foot traffic by offering free samples, free water, discounts on your products and/or services, or any other creative, but enticing, promotion that you can think of.

So, by spending a small amount, you can “stack up” lure modules throughout the day, effectively drawing customers toward your storefront. It’s an easy, affordable, and fun way to level up your marketing!