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Flea Markets, Pop-Up Shops Draw Crowds As Brick-And-Mortar Retailers Struggle

Fort Greene Brooklyn flea market

Brick-and-mortar retailers are going bankrupt at a historic rate, but that does not mean Americans are only shopping online — pop-up shops, markets and fairs are enjoying booming sales as of late. 

Artisan sellers in markets across New York City often achieve higher revenues per square foot than many top retail chains, the Wall Street Journal reports. Bag designer Pamela Barsky sells between $40K and $100K worth of bags a month from her booth in Chelsea’s Artists & Fleas market, while a neighboring men’s accessories seller averages $50K in sales a month.

Experts said many of these markets receive more than 1,000 visitors a day, and up to 15,000 on Sundays, as shoppers flock to pop-up shops and markets in the search for unique products and discounts. In addition to special wares, experts said shoppers are increasingly interested in having some type of personal connection with a seller, something that is hard to achieve though large chains.