The Budding Purchase

Shopping with husband

How to nurture your clients
By Larry Johnson

Researchers tell us that people make decisions in a very linear way—a progression of predictable steps. (Dan Areily’s books Predictably Irrational and The Upside of Irrationality are the best references I’ve read on this topic.) The Internet has conditioned people to want every transaction to be as easy as a few clicks. Just like a cluttered and disorganized website, a store that doesn’t make it easy for a customer to find what they are looking for is just frustrating.

As a jeweller, you might organize your display a certain way, but going back to basics might help you make more sales.

1.) Be the customer
Find out how your customers shop for a specific category of merchandise. For example, many people shop for coloured stone jewellery by colour rather than exact stone type. They may say they are looking for a sapphire, however, what they often want is a brilliant blue. Put your blue palette merchandise together in a single area so that your customers can see the difference instantly. You’ll find customers opting for a tanzanite when they came in looking for sapphire.

2.) Spot the difference
Except for a few brands of highly promoted merchandise, most brands mean nothing to your customer. By putting like and like together, your customer will feel more in control and less overwhelmed. You can focus on showing them the subtle differences side-by-side instead of searching for similar styles while they try and determine the differences for themselves.

3.) Clear out
The acrylic countertop unit with the earrings that don’t sell is blocking the light in the case below it. Take the cluttering trim out of the showcases. Less is much more—when you know what your customers want to buy, keep those items as the focus. Some customers like to browse for themselves, and they don’t want to move plastic flowers or ceramic angels to find it. Think clear, uncluttered, open, inviting and organized.

4.) Unify your team
Your showcases are workbenches for the sales team. They need to be organized to match the team’s sales procedure. Since the case can only be organized in a single way, your sales team needs to follow a standard approach. If a member of your bridal sales team starts each of their sales presentations with the diamond while another talks price or date the ring is needed, your showcase will never work. Get your team on the same sequence of sales and then organize your case layout to support that presentation. Repeat customers will also appreciate that they are treated the same way every time.

5.) Say what you mean
Having a sign that states, “We offer financing from XYZ Financing Company” doesn’t help the customer visualize what possibilities they have. Have a sign that tells your customer what they really want to know, “If you buy this ring for $7000, your monthly payments will be X amount.” Make the sign match the price points in the showcase. Pick a term timeframe, like 18 months, and leave off the pennies. Put a sign in each showcase to answer this often-unasked question.

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