Columnists Brad Huisken You can always sell right!

You can always sell right!

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Owners, managers and salespeople spend a great deal of time trying to devise ways to attract new customers into their stores.  They come up with special sales and promotions that, for the most part, are targeted at attracting new customers.  A successful business must establish a customer base that will lead to repeat business and referrals.  Repeat business is the lifeline of all professional salespeople.

Building relationships with customers is the key to the success of any retail jewelry business.  The first step in establishing repeat customers is establishing relationships with the customers that we already have coming into the store.  Obviously, a salesperson is not going to be friends with every customer that comes into their store.  However, the customer should feel as if they have a friend in you, your store, and/or your staff.

So, how do we build relationships?  The first thing that you must remember is that this is a long process, a lifelong process.  The selling relationship is built on trust, promises that are kept and perceived value to the customer.

Just as in developing relationships in your personal life, the same holds true in developing relationships in your professional life.  In your personal life, if you meet someone that you want to develop a relationship with, the first step is to capture his or her name and to offer your name.  The same holds true in professional relationships.  I would suggest that you get the customers name through offering your name.

I also want to get the customer to ask, or encourage me to follow up with them.  The key to developing a relationship that the customer encourages you to follow up with them is in capturing the customer’s name, address, phone number, and e-mail address and getting the customer to ask you to call them.  Once the customer gives you permission to make a follow up phone call or contact, then the relationship has started to grow and you are on your way to being their personal jewelry sales professional.

Another key to building a repeat customer base is keeping your promises to your customers.  I am talking about all of your promises, from the big ones to the little ones.  Therefore, it is vital that you cover every base and follow through on what you say you are going to do.  That sounds so simple, but you would be surprised at how many salespeople do not tend to the simple things.

If you promise delivery by 2:00 pm on Monday, the delivery must be made by that time. If you say you will follow up with a customer within a week after the purchase, you better do exactly that.  Most customers will remember all the promises that you made to them during the selling process, so make sure that you remember them as well.

Anyone can sell anything to anybody one time.  The key to being a professional salesperson is selling to the same customer repeatedly.  If you take the time to build trust with your customer and keep your promises, then that customer will buy from you instead of you always having to “sell” them.

If a customer leaves your store satisfied, they might tell two or three other people.  If a customer leaves your store dissatisfied, then they are likely to tell ten or more people.  It is vital that you are aware of the fact that everyone you sell to has friends and family and if you take the time to treat the person you are selling to correctly, then chances are you will get their repeat business and referrals as well.  In short, remember that while you only sell to one person at a time, if you treat them well and satisfy their needs, other customers will follow.

A retail jewelry store gets approximately 70% of their business from their existing customer base.  It should also be noted that just because a customer has been a customer for many years does not mean that they do not deserve the same customer service that it took to establish them as a repeat customer.  Every time they come to you to make a purchase, they should be treated as if you are still trying to get them back as a repeat customer.  Because in reality, you are.  Do not take repeat customers for granted because they can shop somewhere else.

I know that we cannot always have the best selection, location, advertising, displays etc. – but you can always sell right.

Author, trainer, consultant, and speaker Brad Huisken is President of IAS Training.  Mr. Huisken has authored several books and training manuals on sales and  produces a Weekly Sales Training Meeting video series along with Aptitude Tests and Proficiency Exams for new hires, current sales staff and sales managers. In addition, he publishes a free weekly newsletter called “Sales Insight” For a free subscription or more information contact IAS Training at 800-248-7703, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or visit his website at www.iastraining.com.

 
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