How to Fix ‘Not Enough Customers’ for Commercial Zones in Cities: Skylines 2

Turns out not every store has to be a mall.

by J.R. Waugh
How to Fix Not Enough Customers in Cities Skylines 2
Image: Attack of the Fanboy

If your commercial zones are not getting enough customers in Cities: Skylines 2, you’re not alone. After an overwhelming tutorial where the game throws a lot at you, you might be surprised that your giant commercial districts aren’t enough to draw in civilians.

This is the result of the game not correctly communicating expectations to you as a player, but the good news is, that it also equips you with the tools to fix that. Here are some suggestions on how you can get more customers in Cities: Skylines 2!

Cities: Skylines 2 Commercial Zones Guide — How to Get More Customers

Once you’ve gotten familiar with zoning, ignore the demand indicator on the bottom-left of the Cities: Skylines 2 UI, you’ll feel pressured into overbuilding commercial spots.

Image: Attack of the Fanboy

These are a few tips you can take to prevent your commercial zones from cannibalizing each others’ business:

  • Use the ‘Marquee’ tool (dotted line) instead of the ‘Fill’ tool (bucket) for zoning commerce
  • Place small spots between residential areas. Low-density places should get smaller commercial zones to make smaller stores (2×2, 3×3)
  • Pay attention to the Commercial Info (Info Views icon on the top-left, selecting the Commercial Icon)
  • Using Commercial Info, build commercial zones where the terrain is within the radius of green-orange circles, meaning a higher concentration of customers
Image: Attack of the Fanboy

Related: How to Grow Your City Population in Cities: Skylines 2

Doing this results in a better balance of customers for your commercial zones. As your city grows, consider experimenting with higher-density zones like low-rent residential housing to draw in more prospective customers. Don’t be alarmed if the ‘not enough customers’ icon doesn’t disappear instantly, as you’ll need to complete the rezoning before things fully take effect.

How Big Should Your Commercial Zones Be?

Image: Attack of the Fanboy

Generally, the closer to the busy urban center you are, you’ll begin to see higher concentrations of customers in the Commercial Info view. Build larger zones (4×4, 5×5, etc) in these areas, while on the outskirts among your low-density housing, focus on smaller zones, 2×2, 3×3. The Marquee tool will be a godsend in righting the ship, and from there you can strike a healthier balance, grow your population, and make more money while keeping expenses low.

- This article was updated on October 25th, 2023

About The Author

J.R. is a Staff Writer with AOTF and has been covering gaming and entertainment in the industry since 2022. Along with a B.A. in History from the University of Cincinnati, he has studied at the University of Birmingham, UK, and part of his M.A. at the University of Waterloo. You'll find J.R. particularly at home writing about the hottest manga and anime. He is highly passionate about horror, strategy, and RPGs, and anything about Star Trek or LOTR. When not ranting about fan theories or writing guides, J.R. is streaming his favorite RPGs and other forgotten gems.