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The Secret Sauce for Closing More Sales in Retail

Saturday, August 05, 2017 | Comments (0)

For anyone working in retail, the ability to close a sale on command is viewed by many as the Holy Grail of sales. Indeed, it seems some people are just naturally born with the charisma and interpersonal skills to cosy to up someone and get them to part with their money. 


But as convenient as it would be to think that there’s probably some kind of sorcery here at work, or the bloke somehow sold his soul to the devil in exchange for sales powers, the reality is kind of…boring, to be honest. Because when it comes right down it, any business or any person can become a real pro at sales.  


It’s just that not everyone chooses to become one. And that’s all it really takes—to decide that you want to be better at sales and recognize that being good at it is a combination of training, good habits, and mindset. 


If you want to be a real pro as a retail salesperson, here are the habits you need to start adopting right now.  


Have no Fear 


This might sound like a platitude, but having real guts goes a long way towards achieving success as a salesperson. Oftentimes, what separate great salespeople from the 'meh' people in retail is simply having the audacity to approach someone, introduce yourself, and build a relationship with them. 

I guess the same applies to approaching someone in a bar, but that's an entirely separate article! 


Stay Curious 


Aside from having guts, it’s important to be curious about people you don’t even know. When you work in retail, you meet strangers every day of the week. So, it goes without saying that you need to be curious about complete strangers, thinking of ways to help solve their problems. Remember, the process of building rapport with a stranger begins when you actively want to connect with them.  


Find Common Ground 


Your customers will be more likely to trust you if they discover you share something in common. It can be a hometown, the city you live in, a hobby, an experience, or even something as simple as supporting the Rabbitohs.  


The trick is listening to a potential customer instead of bombarding them with sales talk. The more you listen, the easier it will be to find similarities. 


Offer a Tour of the Store 


What advantage does your store have over an e-commerce website or a Facebook page? 
Simple: you have a physical store and tangible products your customers can see, touch, and smell themselves. Take advantage of this by offering customers a tour of the store and walking them through your different products. When a customer is willing to go on a tour, they tend to relax and open up to the idea of making a purchase decision with a little bit of prodding. 


Connect Your Products/Services with a Customer’s Past Purchases 


Even though they’ve already made up their mind, customers will still listen to you if you can somehow connect your products/services with their previous purchases. For example, saying that a pair of jeans goes well with the shirt or blouse a customer is wearing can be enough for them to consider a purchase. Not only that, customers are more likely to trust you 


Handle Refusals with Finesse 


Sales is more of a finesse job rather than a brute force taskIt’s one thing to be persistent, but it’s completely something else when you pester a potential customer who refuses to look at something you’re offering. When you get “no” for an answer, you need to evaluate whether the customer is just being dismissive or genuinely doesn’t want to make a purchase. 


Let’s say you’re trying to get a customer to buy a pair of jeans he says he doesn’t need. If you can get that customer to at least try it in the fitting room, you have a good chance of making him reconsider his earlier decision.  


Don’t be Afraid to Upsell 


You’ve succeeded in getting a customer interested enough to buy one of your products. Congratulations. But don’t just stop there. You have someone who has just made a purchase decision, it wouldn’t hurt to prod them into making another one. 


For example, let’s say you managed to convince a customer to buy one of the fancier cameras your store has been aggressively promoting. What you can do now is suggest different accessories you know your customer will someday want to buy, such as a camera strap, a memory card, a camera bag, filters, a tripod perhaps, and extra batteries. Just make sure you’re actually suggesting useful items—you want to be genuinely helpful to customers. 


Remember, once you get a customer to say yes to a large purchase, it doesn’t take much to get them to consider another one, especially if it’s a cheaper item.  


Put the Customer First 


Too many salespeople are so bent on getting someone’s name so they can have dibs on a sales commission. We get it, commission are important, but customers don’t like it when they’re treated like commodities instead of actual people. So yes, while there’s nothing wrong about wanting a commission, you want to offer your name when you’ve finally built trust. Otherwise, you’ll only come across as a tacky used car salesman. 


In Summary 


Ultimately, the key to being good at retail sales and customer service is having the right mindset and practice. Train yourself (and your staff if you have one) to engage people over and over againThere’ll be more misses than hits when you’re first learning the ropes, but over time you’ll notice a pattern in how people respond to attempts at persuasion.  


You can also attend sales training classes or workshops, where you can pick up the basics of effective sales and marketing. But when it comes right down to it, nothing beats applying these lessons in real retail situations.  


For more sales and marketing tips, be sure to follow this blog. If your retail business needs to order custom packaging materials like paper bags, custom printed bags, stickers, and more, don’t hesitate to talk the online packaging specialists of Smartbag We carry all kinds of packaging solutions for retail, promotions, and events.  


To learn more about our products and services, visit our contact page to get in touch with the Smartbag team!

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