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Shane Decker

Shane Decker: Added Value

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Shane Decker: Added Value

The add-on sale is the easiest sale to make in all of retail, says Shane Decker. Yet it’s also the most overlooked.

BY SHANE DECKER

Published in the November 2003 issue

How do you know if you have an amazing salesperson? There’s only one true measuring stick: the add-on sale. If your salesperson closes a ton of add-on sales, then they are a huge asset to your firm. If not, then you’ve got yourself a clerk.

No matter what your sales profile, the add-on sale takes less than three minutes. That’s a pretty small investment for what is the easiest, most missed, most overlooked opportunity in the business. And by the way, it’s also where the real profit lies.

There are three big opportunities to create add-on sales, and you see them almost every day:

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Matching Add-On

This is nothing more than selling the customer an item that matches what they just purchased. If they bought a pair of diamond earrings, sell them the pendant that goes with it. If they’ve already got the pendant, sell them the bracelet … and on you go.

Step Up

This is essentially up-selling a customer to a larger or higher-quality piece, and thus raising the ticket price. If the customer wants to spend $3,000, you sell them for $6,000. If they want a 1/2-carat diamond, you sell them a 1-carat. You wind up doubling the amount they spend with you, and they leave happy, with a far more stunning piece than what they expected to buy.

Repair

In my early years, the store I worked for used to change 3,000 watch batteries a year, and we showed every one of those customers a 1-carat diamond.

The most missed opportunity of them all. The repair customer already trusts you, or they wouldn’t be coming to you to repair their jewelry. What’s more, they’ll be coming in twice: once to drop it off, and once to pick it up. You can show them anything in the store, and show them a different item both times. In my early years, the store I worked for used to change 3,000 watch batteries a year, and we showed every one of those customers a 1-carat diamond. Of those, 62 people waiting for a battery bought a diamond. We wouldn’t have made a single one of those sales if we hadn’t shot for the moon. The great part is, those who didn’t buy were wowed, and most came back later for something else. How many sales do you lose by not asking for the sale from those who trust you most?

All three of these opportunities present an excellent chance for you to add exponentially to your sales volume, and they should not be squandered. Some great lead-in lines to introduce the add-on sale are “Let me show you what goes with this,” or “This would be the ultimate surprise,” or even simply “You’ll love this!” And with the holidays right around the corner, people are going to be buying for all their family and loved ones. What better opportunity could you have for add-on sales? Once you’ve closed the initial sale, all you have to do is ask, “How many others are on your list?” When they answer, they’re giving you permission to show them items for each person. And we all know jewelry makes an awesome gift for any family member.

Once you’ve mastered the art of the add-on sale, not only will your sales quota jump dramatically, but your firm will have happier, more loyal customers than ever. So what’s it going to be … salesperson, or clerky-lerky?

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Shane Decker has provided sales training for more than 3,000 stores worldwide. Contact him at (317) 535-8676 or at ex-sell-ence.com.

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Shane Decker

Did You Know that When You Close a Sale, You’re Helping Your Customer?

They want to leave with their chosen product in a bag.

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TODAY’S CLIENTS DON’T have time to shop tomorrow. They buy the day they shop; you do the same thing. Millennials shop online before they decide to come to your store. Older generations might go from store to store to find what they want, but they too buy the day they shop. Most of us start with the store where we want to leave our money.

Clients want you to close the sale. In part, they are paying you to make a professional decision for them and trusting you to do it. Sixty to 70 percent of your clients cannot make up their own minds. That’s why you should never say, “Can I wrap it up for you?” They will walk because you’re asking them to make a decision.

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Moreover, approximately 90 percent of all clients who say I’ll be back never come back; 7 percent do. And, around 80 percent of all clients who say “I’ll be back” buy elsewhere within the first one to two hours after leaving your location.

The No. 1 reason clients leave empty-handed is not inventory or price. It’s that they were not closed. Too many salespeople do show-and-tell presentations rather than show-and-sell presentations. Independently owned stores’ closing ratios are between 27-33 percent, yet 80 percent of shoppers buy the day they shop. If you shop today, do you have time to shop tomorrow? Didn’t think so.

Never believe the client is coming back. This is the time for a team-sell or a T.O. When they say “I’ll be back,” that means they are leaving to shop somewhere else.

When you let the client leave empty-handed, you’re giving money to one of your competitors.

The best way to preserve client loyalty is to close the sale. A client is successful when they leave with a bag, give you money and they’re glad they came in — not when they have to leave and start the process somewhere else.

One of your most successful opportunities should be your referral clients, but remember, they have high expectations. Someone bragged about how awesome you or your team was. If the expectations are met, closing ratio with referrals are usually over 80 percent. Interestingly, this is a higher percentage than even clients who come in two-three times per year. Another type of presentation that should have a high closing ratio (80 percent) is the appointment.

The more money the item costs, the easier it is to close it. A $500 item is harder to close than a $5,000 item and so on. Why? Because the client can. Never decide for the client how much they can spend. Let them decide that. Do not do price presentations.

Owners, track clients coming in with a door counter and see how many sales slips are written up. This will tell you your closing ratio, which is the most important number in your entire company. You’ll also learn what your team is doing. Ultimately, your store’s closing ratio should be 50 percent or more.

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Shane Decker

What Not To Do During the First 30 Seconds of Any Sale

Huddling at the back is a big no-no.

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HAVE YOU EVER walked into what appeared to be a nice store, only to spin and leave faster than you came in? Or, have you ever walked into a nice place of business and watched two salespeople look at each other, then you, then each other again, like they’re seeing which one of them is going to wait on you?

You’re not alone — we’ve all had this experience, and jewelry stores are no exception. At too many stores, you’re not greeted at all, and sometimes, you can’t even find anyone to take care of your needs. This is one reason the Internet is doing so well.

People today are time-starved, and they will decide within the first 30 seconds of entering your store whether or not they’re going to give you their money.

Let’s begin with the first five seconds: every customer must be greeted — ideally, from the “sweet spot” in your store (15 feet inside your door to the customer’s right as they walk in). When you’re a client and you’re acknowledged, you feel important. It’s a relief subconsciously to realize that the sales associates know you’re there.

Never allow your sales floor to be vacant when clients come in. Many say they are just looking, but that’s an opportunity for you to use your first close by saying, “I always do that before I buy; let’s get started!” or “I’m glad you came in to take care of that today.”

“I’m just looking” means “I’m just spending.” It means “I’m on a mission, and when I find what I’m looking for, I’m gonna buy it.” It does not mean, “Leave me alone.” Like I said before, we are a time-starved nation, and nobody is just looking.

Do not come from the back of the store to the front; you should be there already. When you come from the back, your mind is focused on the busy work you were doing or the donut you were eating.

Never greet a customer from a group huddle. It’s good to laugh in your store, but if you’re all laughing about something when the client walks in, they may think you’re laughing at them.

Do not use canned openings like “Hi, how are you?” or “What can I help you with?” Clients don’t need “help”; they want professional assistance to make a purchase or information about a service needed. Likewise, don’t say, “Good morning, welcome to Smith Jewelers.” That gets old, fast. What if they come in three or four times a year and hear you say the same thing? Keep your greetings creative and make sure they’re welcoming. Your greeting should be professional and make your client feel glad they came into your place of business.

Be present for the start of the sale, and keep it professional. Starting strong allows you to make it to the end (and hopefully close the sale). By doing so, you’ll keep your client from wanting to go to the Internet — after all, we do want to talk to real people, especially when it comes to jewelry.

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Shane Decker

How to Close a Male Buyer When You Know the Female Wants the Product

He needs to hear her say “yes.”

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HOW DO YOU CLOSE a bridal or anniversary ring sale when you know that the woman is making the decision on the product, but the man is the one making the purchase? You have to make two presentations at the same time — one that delivers peace of mind and freedom from risk (for him), and one that delivers on style and sentiment (for her).

Let’s say you’ve gone through your presentation and sold cut, clarity, color and carat weight, and explained the lab report, and the man is satisfied with the diamond. The presentation is just getting started. The woman wants to look at different shapes, try it on, take pictures with it and wear it.

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After you’ve built the relationship, ask selling-specific questions to both the man and the woman to find out exactly what they want. Eventually, you’ll know from conversation that the price is right, the diamond is correct and she loves the mounting. Now you’re in the 30-second window when it’s time to close the sale and the woman’s made up her mind. Sometimes you have to ask the wearer of the ring the proper questions so that the purchaser of the ring can hear answers to give him self-confidence to buy. You use the woman to help close the man.

Make sure she is wearing the ring when you ask these questions, and that she‘s looking at the ring during the conversation. He is going to hear a series of questions from you to which she will answer, “Yes.”

Do you love this ring? Yes.

Would you want to wear this ring all day, every day forever? Yes.

Would you like to leave with this ring today? Yes.

Does it feel right? (If not we can size it.) Yes.

Is this the diamond of your dreams? Yes.

He has heard five yeses. Now you can look at him and say, “She’s found the ring and diamond of her dreams.” This keeps him from saying, “We need to leave and discuss this.” She’s made up her mind; this is the one she wants. Based on the answers she’s given, she wants to leave with it. My close here would be, “While we’re wrapping this up, how would you like to take care of this?” You should use a close that’s correct for your selling profile.

Quit closing the wrong person. Sometimes you have to close the wearer first to close the buyer.

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