Employees make the Difference

In certain markets, and especially in common items like home electronics, it's almost impossible to compete on price because there are countless internet discount sites selling the same items you carry, but at fire sale prices. The same is true of big box retailers like Costco and BestBuy. You can't realistically compete with them on price.

But, you can compete with them on customer experience as we've discussed before. I focused on in-store displays and knowledgeable groupings of items, but having fast, friendly, courteous, and above all, knowledgeable, employees who are eager to help but not pushy to sell can make all the difference.

More and more consumers are doing research on the internet before going to a store to make their purchases. In the case of complicated electronics, or high end items like jewelry, the best deals are online, but making such a purchase from a website can be daunting. If you can get the customer to your store and guide them through all the pitfalls involved in such a purchase, while allowing them to truly experience the item in person, then they are likely to buy it from you, and to recommend you to their friends.

This type of consultative selling tactic takes the pressure off the customer, with your employees and sales staff literally guiding them through the process patiently until they are comfortable, satisfied, and ready to purchase.

By focusing on the details and the benefits, you can almost take price out of the major considerations a customer looks at when purchasing. Do this, and make sure all of your employees not only know HOW to do it, but understand WHY they must do it EVERY time, and you'll improve your sales.


Will Atkinson has spent his entire career dealing directly with small retailers to solve their technology problems, especially point of sale and inventory control issues. Will manages CAP Software, a specialty POS software company dedicated to providing the finest in retail POS applications for small and medium retailers. Learn more about CAP at www.capretail.com or contact me at will@capretail.com. His expertise extends to customer service issues, usability and workflow properties, and other re...

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