Topic: Luxury Retail

Retail Store Tour - What Your Luxury Customers Are Missing

By Bob Phibbs

My watch had stopped working so I took it to a jewelry store. As I entered, the guy asked the usual. The tired. The boring, "Can I help you, sir?"
"I need a new watch battery I think."
"Right over here."

I went over to a small glass walled desk where the watchmaker took the watch apart, added a new battery, cleaned it off, charged me and I was on my way.

Great job you might say...he gave me what I wanted.

Wrong. Big time. Here's why...

I left that 4000 sq ft store not knowing any other products they carried. I didn't consider a new watch. A new band. A wedding band. A glass vase for a corporate gift. Nada.

They are the watch battery store to me.

A shame because they could just open a 100 sq ft kiosk in a mall and replace batteries all day. Hold that thought...

When I was speaking in Cancun, I was able to take a tour to the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza. When we arrived, our tour guide took us through the ruins, pointing out the sacrificial temple, the observatory, what the skeleton heads carved into the limestone meant, the Mayan calendar etc. It was very interesting.

 

Bob Phibbs at the Pyramid of Kukulkan, Yucatan, Mexico

Then it occurred to me that there were several people without guides.

And what exactly did they get out of it? Everything was in another language- no English to be found.No maps of the ruins, no arrows pointing, no POP to tell you what you were looking at or why, how far one point of interest was to another, etc.

Many times we arrive in a luxury boutique or other store with nothing more than curiosity; products towering over us.

Left alone, we try and figure out what the store offers. A clerk often greets us with the, "Can I help you" which leads to “I’m just looking,” as overwhelmed consumers don’t want to feel stupid. Or even worse, the clerk takes us to the tiniest part of the store to see the one thing we, at that moment, chose to voice.

That is why it is so important to give a store tour. For example, "Is this your first time in the store?" "Yes," answers the customer. "May I give you a brief store tour?" Once they answer yes again, take your time.

It's Disneyland
Act as a tour guide at Disneyland for your jewelry store. "We began as a watch store so you'll find all the latest styles from X, Y and Z (Watchland), we added a complete bridal section with wedding rings, parents gifts and X (Weddingland,) and over here are our gifts for business all made right here in our shop including cufflinks, flasks and desk sets (Businessland,) and we also repair all watches and settings (Fixitland.)" Got the idea?

This also works if you have custom elements or services that could use an explanation.

For example, if you were an optical store, “We operate a little differently than some others, may I explain it to you?” The customers almost always say, “Yes.” “We’ll begin with the frames and I’ll explain a bit about the shape of your face, what might look good and why.You can browse alone or I can stay with you the whole time, then we’ll look at the lens choices based on your needs, then we’ll get an idea of how long it might take and if everything looks good to you, we’ll get a deposit.”

That lets the customer relax that they are in good hands.Without it, everything can feel overwhelming and give the customer various reasons to walk out.

If you are a sporting goods store you could do a tour of the store with the various areas of your store.If you are a window fashions store you could give a tour by product beginning with the lowest to the highest priced.

Oh yes, a store tour doesn’t have to add much time but it does cement trust and with that, you can build larger sales and more loyal customers.

If you need help crafting and training a store tour, call me, the Retail Doctor makes house calls.

 

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