Retail Sales Consultant Tip: The question you ask
“Why didn’t you put the trash out last night?” immediately puts the other person on the defensive.
When we are in the presence of a great salesperson, they mindfully stay away from the untrained masses of, “Can I help you find anything?” or “Looking for anything particular?”
Like the old, “When did you start beating your wife?” such questions put the customer on the defensive. Customers then avoid the employee at all costs.
That’s why you want to ask questions that put customers at ease. “Who gets the gift today?” in the middle of your jewelry store or other luxury item’s sales process allows the customer to open up and tell you about the occasion and the person; without you having to try to play 20 questions and drag the information out of their mouths kicking and screaming.
Retail training has done nothing to get people to listen. It has just enabled employees to mindlessly greet over and over and over, “Hi, how are you today?” Just regurgitating placeholders in a sales process that can’t afford placeholders.
You have to find something to nudge the relationship forward when people enter your store. Something genuine. Different from the thousands of other stores. Better than the conversations they’ve had in their personal lives. I find, “Good morning” is a great way to get someone’s attention. A bit formal but it doesn’t demand anything. Plus you rarely hear it spoken so it pricks up a customer’s ears that it is different at this store.
Of course, you want someone who can make you believe it is a good morning to say that, but that’s another post.
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