On Sales Strategies: Up Your Closings by 50%

Look out for sales killers on the floor.


Published in the March 2012 issue

Next time you’re frustrated about losing a sale, think about how much more frustrating it must be for the client who left. He came into your store hoping you would be the one who could meet his needs, and you failed to do so.

There are three sale killers that I see happen in every store I visit, and customers are leaving in droves because of them. All three have to do with store floor awareness. Store floor awareness means that the manager and all salespeople know what is happening on the sales floor at all times. Is the “sweet spot” covered? Is the right sales associate with the right client? Does somebody on the sales floor need an assist? Does one of the sales associates need a T.O. or help in closing? The wrong answer to any of these questions means that sale is probably dead in the water. Here are the three related sale killers to watch out for:


You need an assist retrieving a sales tool (like a lab report, pen or tweezers) but you don’t get one, so you have to walk away from the client. Your chance of closing just dropped by 50 percent! Someone always has to be available to grab something that the sales associate standing in front of the customer needs. When the sales associate has to walk away, he looks disorganized. Worse, it gives the client time to think about things he’d rather be doing. So when you come back, his mind isn’t even on your presentation.


You’re not the right personality that the client needs for the presentation. I’ve been in over 3,000 stores and never met anyone who was the right salesperson for every customer. If a client winds up with the wrong personality, he won’t be satisfied with the presentation. Someone has to be available for the team sell or T.O. The client’s expectations could be high, which is why it’s so important to have the right presenter.


The salesperson can’t close the sale and doesn’t call in another salesperson to help him close the sale. Hear this: Just because you ask someone to help you close the sale doesn’t mean you have to be pushy. The fact is, the customer came in to buy. When you let customers leave empty-handed, over 60 percent buy within the first two hours after leaving your location! The truth is, there are a lot of salespeople who can close the client you’re waiting on, and you will be able to close some they can’t. The average closing ratio in independently-owned jewelry stores in the U.S. is 23 percent; 77 percent of all clients are leaving empty-handed, many times from these three sale killers. On the other hand, when you make store floor awareness a priority and are willing to team-sell, the closing ratio goes up 50 percent!

See Shane Decker as part of the “Monsters of Sales” seminar series at The SMART Jewelry Show April 21-23 in Chicago. (Conference begins April 20.)