Organise an exhibition successfully: Why 60% of businesses could be wasting money at trade shows

We realise that’s quite an inflammatory thing to say, but we’d like to explain why a significant amount of businesses could be losing money at an exhibition.

To organise an exhibition successfully, you’d think that every exhibitor would have an objective. That’s only the case for 40% of the businesses we surveyed. Our analysis indicates that the remaining 60% could be losing money, from a range of factors.

To be clear, only 10% of businesses that set an objective deemed their exhibition to be unsuccessful. This means that nearly everyone who had a goal, achieved it.  For those businesses that didn’t set an objective, this figure more than doubles - to 23%.



We wanted to look into why that might be. Our analysis indicates that the businesses without an objective didn’t start organising an exhibition stand until 3 months before the show at the earliest. 

With a short time to plan an entire stand, many of these businesses resorted to building custom exhibition stands (40% custom vs 20% modular) - which can be incredibly effective - however they naturally attract a higher cost than modular stands that are reusable and make organising an exhibition much simpler. 

This also results in inevitable extra charges from designers/contractors for an urgent service.


Design & Build

60% of businesses without an objective spent over 10 hours designing their stand, significantly more than those who had planned ahead. A clear goal allowed these businesses to provide a clear brief to designers, resulting in less time being spent on creative. 

This clarity resulted in a better exhibition stand build process. Only 20% of the businesses who had an objective noticed any minor difference between their design and the real thing. This figure shoots up to 54% for ill-prepared exhibitors.


What’s our opinion?

Our expert when it comes to organising an exhibition, Tom, commented: 

“Although it may be common sense, businesses that plan well in advance of their exhibition are far more likely to have a successful show. 

By setting an objective, there is a goal that the entire business can gravitate around, resulting in every department pulling towards a single target. The benefits of this have been proven in our research, with these businesses spending less time (and therefore money) on design services, creating a more cost-effective stand that can be used multiple times, and a more accurate build process.

“With space alone costing businesses around £3000 at events, saving money where you can is imperative. With the only cost associated with preparation being time - it's something businesses should consider investing in.”


Make sure you organise an exhibition stand successfully

We’re exhibition stand design and build experts, with over 20 years experience creating engaging displays and stress-free stand builds. 

Get in touch with us for a chat about your next event, and let the challenge of organising an exhibition be taken off your hands.