Visitors and exhibitors both very enthusiastic about PLANTARIUM|GROEN-Direkt

The event for the European garden plant retail sector

Both the visitors and the exhibitors of the first edition of PLANTARIUM|GROEN-Direkt that was held on 24 and 25 August were positive about the fair. This is evident from the results of the online survey that was sent to the visitors and exhibitors shortly after the fair, which also yielded a few lessons to be learnt for the fair’s organisers.

The results underline the enthusiastic reactions of the standholders that already reached the fair team during and shortly after the fair. Fair director Linda Hoogendoorn–Veelenturf felt a survey would be a good idea to find out how the standholders and visitors had experienced the fair. “These results confirm that this first edition was a success. It’s always good to see positive reactions being confirmed by independent research. This tells us that our approach is effective and gives us useful information for the coming editions.” The most frequently expressed complaint by far, by both the exhibitors and the visitors, concerned the temperature. “The temperatures were extremely high – that’s very difficult to control, but we will have to pay more attention to this in future.” Fortunately, this aspect won’t be an issue at the next edition, which will take place on 7 and 8 February. The fair organisers will investigate how best to anticipate high temperatures at the next autumn edition. Other aspects that will be receiving their attention will be the fair’s layout and signage, and the use of the mobile fair halls – there are a few lessons to be learnt here too.

Exhibitors’ results
Most exhibitors by far take part in PLANTARIUM|GROEN-Direkt to maintain contacts with existing customers. This was closely followed by the second reason: to establish contacts with new business relations. PLANTARIUM|GROEN-Direkt was awarded a good average score of 7.5. Specific aspects of the fair were also appreciated, with 8.0 being the highest score for the ‘quality of the visitors’ and 7.3 the ‘lowest’ for ‘facilities’ and ‘number of established contacts’. These are high scores, explains interim fair manager Ids Boersma: “I have organised dozens of trade fairs and such scores are exceptional, especially for a new fair. Dutch standholders tend to be rather critical. It’s great to see this fair awarded such high scores, also for aspects that are often seen as a problem child, such as catering. The clearest evidence of how well the fair was appreciated is the number of reservations that were made immediately after the fair: around 35% of the exhibitors have already registered for participation in the spring edition!”

Visitors’ ratings
The visitors were a reasonably balanced mixture from different sectors: consultancy firms, nurseries, suppliers, garden centres/retail businesses and wholesalers. Almost two-thirds of all the visitors were in some way involved in the purchase of the kinds of products and services presented at PLANTARIUM|GROEN-Direkt.

Customer relations management was quoted as the main reason for visiting the fair, followed by finding inspiration and new ideas.

The visitors gave PLANTARIUM|GROEN-Direkt an excellent average score of 8.0, and also good scores for the various aspects, the highest being 8.0 for the ‘quality of the exhibitors’ and the ‘lowest’ 7.1 for ‘new ideas’ and ‘number of novelties/innovations’. The catering received a remarkably high score of 7.8.

The survey was conducted by an external, independent agency: ExpoResult, which specialises in surveying assessments of fair visitors and exhibitors. The number of respondents who participated in the survey was more than enough to yield a representative result.

Opening hours and days
Around three-quarters of both the exhibitors and the visitors found the opening hours just fine the way they were, while almost 90% were satisfied with the two-day length of the fair. Based on these results the fair organisers will be using the same opening hours and two-day length in organising the spring edition next February and the subsequent autumn edition in August.

PLANTARIUM|GROEN-Direkt, the Green Retail Fair, coincides with GROEN-Direkt’s Autumn and Spring Fairs to create the perfect opportunity for suppliers and everyone else active in the green sector to meet one another. The next edition will take place on 7 and 8 February 2023, coinciding with GROEN-Direkt’s Spring Fair. The fair will be held in and around the GROEN-Direkt hall at the International Trade Centre in Hazerswoude/Boskoop, the Netherlands. More information can be found on the website