This article originally ran in the September 2009 issue of JCK Magazine.
Nobody has a crystal ball that can tell the future, but the days of rapid growth and huge sales increases are clearly over, so it’s more important than ever to maximize every opportunity. The people waiting on customers must be trained to a level that many have never known before. The sales manager (or owner) has to be trained to train the sales staff.
Consider setting a non-negotiable standard that requires at least one of three things to happen with every shopper:
- The customer buys something.
- The salesperson captures name, address, phone number, and e-mail address with permission for follow-up.
- The customer is turned over to another salesperson to try to complete the sale.
Jewelers spend a fortune to get customers into the store. Letting them go without one of these three actions taking place is unacceptable.
Here’s another non-negotiable standard to think about: Salespeople must attempt to sell additional merchandise to every customer who makes a purchase. You never know what other special events or occasions the customer has where jewelry may be an appropriate gift.
Here’s one more: Every salesperson must attempt to convert every repair customer into a jewelry purchase customer.
I’m not saying salespeople should become pushy and aggressive. There are right ways and many wrong ways to sell additional merchandise, convert repairs to sales, and deliver a turnover. That’s where the sales manager has to be on the floor, training, coaching, accepting turnovers, and in some cases taking over if a sales presentation isn’t going well. The ultimate goal, every time we have an opportunity, is to produce a happy customer. I mean a customer who will go out into the world and sing our praises.
Get the sales manager trained to help the staff be more effective and all the pieces will fall into place. Great sales staffs are developed-they just don’t happen.
Author, trainer, consultant, and speaker Brad Huisken is president of IAS Training and the author of the books I’m a Salesman! Not a Ph.D. and Munchies for Salespeople: Sales Tips You Can Sink Your Teeth Into! He developed the PMSA Relationship Selling Program, the Professional Sales Management Course, The Mystery Shoppers Kit, and The Weekly Sales Training Meeting video series, as well as aptitude tests and proficiency exams for new hires, current sales staff, and sales managers. Huisken and his staff of trained professionals conduct in-house training and consulting all over North America on an ongoing basis. He also publishes a free weekly newsletter called "Sales Insight." For a free subscription or more information, contact IAS Training at (800) 248-7703, fax (303) 936-9581, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.iastraining.com.