Are your sales staff winning or killing the deal?

By Keri Algar

SYDNEY, NSW: Retailers must have non-negotiable standards in place around customer service because the customer is not the most important person in the business, “they are the business,” according to retail training expert Bob Johnson.

“Customers come in different shapes, sizes, colours, dress types and age groups, but you need to keep in mind that they all have one thing in common…they have your money in their pocket and if you say the right things and do the right things, they just might give it back to you,” he said.

Johnson, who has been working in the industry for 20 years, said that consumers can sense insincerity, and that patronising attitudes can kill deals.

“Selling is not telling. Loading customers up with information is destined to fail. Selling is about asking. Asking useful, relevant questions.

“Too many inexperienced salespeople try to become an encyclopaedia of their products and think it is their job to impress (or bamboozle) their customers with this knowledge. Wrong.

“Selling is the art of helping people make the right decisions about the right products, that’s it. True professionals find out what the customer wants or needs and then tailor the product to suit that particular customer’s needs.”

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