When you're just starting out in the brick-and-mortar retail world, sometimes you have to make do with a smaller shop space than you'd like. While it can be tough selling from a small shop, there are many ways to make the most of it. Here's how you can start improving the inside and outside of your space to increase your customers and earn enough revenue to expand.

Inside: Don't Make it Look Cluttered

While it may seem obvious, many small shop owners forget that overcrowding their shop can be a serious negative. Customers want to enjoy their shopping experience; rifling through stuffed racks and squeezing around tight shelves can taint that. Thankfully, there are many ways to reduce overcrowding and clutter. Start by choosing a colour scheme that feels open. Neutral-coloured shelving, for example, is easier on the eyes when piled with products. Next, make sure you use all the available space. Alongside floor displays, consider wall shelves and ceiling rails to make use of the vertical space too. This will give your customers more room to move around and reduce the need to put too many products on one display. Finally, don't be afraid to keep some of your products off. For example, if you have an item with a lot of colour or size variations, consider keeping some of these variations in your back office and add a sign to your display inviting customers to ask to see more.

Outside: Get an Eye-Catching Shop Front Sign

One of the downsides of having a small shop is that it can be overlooked by passersby, particularly on a busy street. If you want to take advantage of that passing footfall, you need to make sure your shop stands out in spite of its size. One great way to draw attention is an eye-catching shop front sign. What's eye-catching will depend on your shop's surroundings. If all the neighbouring premises have dark signs, try marking yours with a colourful one. If your street is dark or you get a lot of evening foot traffic, opt for an illuminated LED sign. If the other shops around yours have displays that extend out into the walkways and yours doesn't, you may find success with a projecting sign that sticks out from the side of your premises combined with a pavement sign. Once customers notice that you exist, they'll come back time and time again, spreading the word about your business to others.