The retail trade is a competitive one and chances are, no matter what industry you are in, you are likely to be dealing with customers.
Working with customers, especially in the retail environment is a great way to start your career, and if you are successful at it, it will lead you to have some fantastic opportunities in the future.
It is common in job interviews to be asked the question “give an example of a time when you used good customer service” which just affirms how much significance it really has.
If you have a passion for what you are selling, this is a huge benefit, but not essential. You have probably heard the phrase “the customer is always right,” and within reason, this rule still applies. Without the customer there is no company, simple as that.
Efficient service begins the moment the customer enters the store, or makes contact. It is important to acknowledge them, if possible with a greeting or at the very least a smile and eye contact.
When trying to assess customer’s needs, ask open ended questions. This will ensure they get the right item. By reading their body language you will be able to gauge their response, and tell whether they are comfortable, or even frustrated.
Listening skills are vital for customer service, you need to listen to them and use your answers to reflect this.
There is nothing worse than being ignored or served by an uninterested salesperson. The best way to learn what customers like is to think of your own experiences and how you like to be treated when you enter a store.
Some key ingredients to Sales success are:
- Greeting and acknowledging the customer – without negatively affecting those you are currently serving. Remember, first impressions really do count!
- Be polite and friendly and use your listening skills.
- Know your products. It is important to know what you are selling!
- Learn to understand body language – sometimes a customer might be too embarrassed or annoyed to tell you how they really feel, but you may be able to understand the situation by reading their body language.
- Know how to close a sale. This is sometimes the hardest part of Sales, but if you know your customer and their needs you will be well on your way to retail success. Don’t be afraid to ask for a commitment from the customer.