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Shane Decker

Shane Decker: Pitching Rotation





Who’s on first? The more important question is who’s on the sweet spot?


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Every person who walks through your door should feel like it was an honor for you to get to wait on them. How many places have you gone where you felt like that? Not very many, I bet!

Your clients will decide in the first 30 seconds whether they’re going to give you their money. How many times have you walked into a store, spun around and walked out because something wasn’t right? It didn’t take long for you to decide, did it? The No. 1 reason clients say they didn’t buy (other than not being closed) was they couldn’t get waited on.


One of the main culprits preventing extraordinary customer service is “busy work.” Too many salespeople have so much busy work that they don’t pay attention to the sales floor. When the client walks in and we have to greet them from the back of the store, or they literally have to look for someone to wait on them, you’ve failed at making that critical first impression. The first impression isn’t based on the merchandise that the store has, but rather on how we as professionals made the customer feel.

Our No. 1 priority is the client, and they need to feel that immediately. To be sure they do, you need a sales floor rotation policy to ensure the “sweet spot” is always covered (the sweet spot is located 10-15 feet from the front door on the right — never behind a showcase — as the client walks in the door).

Make a chart to keep track of who’s covering the sweet spot. For example, John is first, Susan’s second, Kathy’s third, Michael’s fourth, and so on. As soon as a client comes in, John greets and waits on her, and Susan goes to the sweet spot to take care of the next client coming in. That way, while John’s with a client, he doesn’t have to look away from the sale to greet the next client coming in — the sweet spot’s covered. And, the person in the sweet spot is always ready to take a T.O., so no one gets stranded with a customer who’s not a match for their selling profile. This procedure elevates teamwork, increases the closing ratio, and makes sure no client comes in without being welcomed, smiled at and spoken to within the first five seconds.

The more professional you are in the beginning, the easier and quicker it is to build the proper selling relationship and close the sale.

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

This story is from the May 2011 edition of INSTORE. 




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