Fall 2022 Hardlines Strategies


What’s in a Sale Teach Your Team These Basic Skills to Create Return Customers

That doesn’t mean you have to resort to used-car-salesman, high-pressure tactics to close the deal. But they need to do more than just direct traffic around the salesfloor. An effective sales approach requires employees to proactively engage customers, understand their needs and create an excellent shopping to have a profitable retail business, sales associates need to be good at selling. W hile it may sound obvious, if you want

experience. If it’s successful, you’ll build lasting relationships so customers will return again and again. Rich Kizer and Georganne Bender, with retail consulting firm KIZER & BENDER, have worked with thousands of businesses to help them better understand their customers. Their explanation of the sales process will help your employees create an atmosphere of excellent customer

Talk about anything that doesn’t have anything to do with the store,” Bender says. “Use those first 30 seconds of the conversation to create an aura of partnership with the customer.” From there, transition to an open-ended question to start the conversation about why they came into the store. Ask questions such as “What brings you in today?” or “What project are you working on today?” Never ask “May I help you?” or “Do you need help?” or any other question with a yes or no answer. The hospitality you show with the initial greeting should be consistent wherever the customer goes in the store. “We tell employees to use our Seven Tile Rule,” Bender says. “Greet every customer who comes within 7 feet, or about seven floor tiles, of you. Every

service while at the same time encourage customers to buy. Break the Ice

While helping customers find what they need is your ultimate objective, that shouldn’t necessarily be the way you start a conversation. “In your first contact with a customer, you’re just breaking the ice.

4 Fall 2022 • Hardlines Strategies

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