There are endless amounts of ways that you as a vendor can improve the selling experience for your customers, whether it be by showing them a friendly smile, striking up a conversation, or demonstrating some of your products so buyers can see how they work. Even though every reason in the book is important to keep in mind, since customer experience is the ultimate determining factor for making a sale, there are three basic yet crucial components to making consumers happy. Here are the three commandments to a great selling experience given by an expert in the retail industry:
Commandment #1: Vendors should never leave the selling space, no matter what.
Even if you have to use the bathroom, it’s important to make sure that someone is watching over your booth or selling space. Not only does this prevent theft, but if a customer has a question, there’s no one there to answer it, so nothing is stopping them from moseying on over to another booth.
“Even if you have 40 solid associates, if they are not there to serve the customer in their moment of need, you will lose that opportunity,” Ben Rowe, Strategic Account Executive at Bigtincan, said. “No amount of inventory will change the fact that when they had a question, they had to look for someone.”
Rowe ran one of the most successful Apple stores in the country, so he has a lot of experience in dealing with customers and making sure they are well taken care of. According to him, 83% of consumers prefer dealing with human beings. They could very easily just Google their question, but they prefer to ask a human being, so why not be there for them when they need you?
Commandment #2: Training new employees happens in the moment, not in back.
It’s much easier to give new employees a list of rules and tell them what to do and say before you open for the day, but that’s not actually how they learn. According to Rowe, as of 206, 87% of learning content was forgotten in 30 days. Everyone, especially Millennials and Gen Z, have been trained that when they have a question, they can just Google at the tip of a finger and get an immediate answer.
“I became a leader at Apple because I crushed it on the sales floor,” Rowe said. “That culture nurtured me to understand how to help others, and it all happened on the floor. Employees can say, ‘I don’t know how to deal with this,’ but they can work together right there on the sales floor.”
A good way to think of it is that your employees won’t know what questions to ask until an actual scenario happens where they need to know specific information. Giving them the opportunity to learn for themselves with real life interactive experiences with customers is the best way to learn, and they are more likely to remember the information.
Commandment #3: Be passionate about your work and show it to customers.
You and your employees are 10x more valuable by creating an atmosphere that customers actually want to be a part of, according to Rowe. This means that you need to be engaged from the moment you open your booth to the exact moment you close, and sometimes after that if passers by have any questions about products they see you putting away.
“If you and your employees are excited to work there, that will translate to great customer experiences,” Rowe said.
You also have to be careful about being too attentive and excited as to not scare customers away. Be at the ready and give them attention, but if they don’t seem like they want to talk or are just browsing, then keep your distance but also stay nearby in case they have a question or want to see a product that’s out of reach. By listening to the these three commandments, you’re sure to give your customers the best experience possible and create good memories.