How can sales associates successfully juggle customers?
Through a special arrangement, presented here for discussion is a summary of a current article from the Retail Doctor’s blog.
Do we ever want to leave a customer? Of course not, because you risk making the customer feel rejected and losing the sale.
But in this day of budget scheduling, salespeople at times more than likely will have to cover several departments and wait on more than one customer at a time.
Here are three tips on how to get away from one shopper and onto another with a bit of grace.
Give an honest reason and summarize your interaction so far. You could say, “I have to go greet those customers over there. I hope that’s OK.” (Wait for their response, which 99 percent of the time will be “go ahead.”) Then: “Before I go though, just to recap …” The goal is to let the shopper know that they have been heard by confirming what has been said. People who feel heard are more patient and forgiving. After you’ve paraphrased your interaction so far, you’ll hear the customer say, “Yes.”
Give them something to do while you’re away. This is easy with apparel because they can try on another size, color or additional item. Once you understand that you need to keep their minds busy so they don’t look at the clock, you can be creative. With other products, like furniture, have them find a picture of the room the couch is supposed to go in on their smartphone. For a new TV, have them use your Wi-Fi to send a picture of their kids to the screen. You get the idea.
Introduce them to another salesperson. Often the best salespeople will be in more demand. If that’s you, similarly to number two above, make sure you restate where you are in the sales process to the other salesperson and what the customer is looking to solve today. Introduce the new salesperson to the shopper by name. That way the shopper will usually offer theirs and they continue the communication human-to-human.
When you return to the shopper to pick up where you left off, thank them for their patience. Then recap where you left them, and get them to talk about what they’ve been doing since you left.
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: What tips would have for managing multiple shoppers on busy days? Can you add any suggestions to those offered in the article?