Even the most exclusive of stores can get the selling part so wrong. I am sure we all think we are doing the right thing, but how great do we really make our customers feel when purchasing from us is often a mystery. I went out for some reward shopping yesterday in Brisbane after some massive results in my business and in the lead up of my birthday it was time for my next Chanel purchase. I love Chanel, I love the experience of shopping there and my purchased products last me literally decades. I mean check out this wallet I had bought 10 years ago and it was only yesterday that I chose to replace it. Amazing quality and craftsmanship...
I was in the Mindset that i was going to pick something so I was in total 100% committed buying mood. Remember most of our customers are not in this place. I was also excited to get shown all the different products they hide away from the displays (as they do to keep their stores really minimal) It's like this secret squirrel club that those who have never purchased or shopped there would never know that they have massive amounts of stock and options hidden away in their furniture of the store.
So my sis Francesca Moi and I walked in excited to have an experience and pick something that is going to be part of my life for a long time. I also thought I may consider a new bag but see what the options are. The first thing we saw was a bag that I liked for my business use (it could fit my computer and A4 diary). There was no price on it which normally is on the inside of the bag so I asked the nearest sales assistant to tell me 'What the Investment in the Bag Was.'
First thing I want you to notice is that I don't speak of Costs, I speak in terms of Investment when I get a price on anything. I hate the word cost, first of all I don't want to feel like it's a cost and second I feel great knowing I am investing in something that will serve me. I do it on lower priced items as well as big purchases. SPEAK TO YOUR CLIENTS IN TERMS OF INVESTMENT NOT WHAT THE COST OF YOUR PRODUCT/SERVICE IS. Language is so important in selling - more so as a great part of the experience rather than the word itself. The client feels amazing when they know they are making an awesome investment.
So lets move into the things that unfolded during the Sales Process with my Chanel Sales Assistant:
1. She Talked Way TOO MUCH! It took her almost 15 minutes to price us up on the bag I liked because she spent the whole time justifying why certain bags cost 'x' amount versus 'y' amount. Listing feature after feature (no benefits), how they made them, how many they released, what kind of machine would be used on the metal parts of the handles. Blah blah blah, I was not interested in any of that and the comparison with another bag that I had looked at in the past came out of the cupboard. I didn't care so much for that bag, I really like the one I picked.
So by the end of the bag educational history lesson, I really didn't care what the price was, as I was put off by all the talking and I said I am going to buy my new Chanel bag in Milan when I go to Italy later this year as I had done with my other Chanel bag a few years ago and gave her the old lame excuse that I will buy it at a cheaper price and save of Tax which is what happened last time when I got the most awesome deal and experience in Milan. I told her that because I was not investing $6000 for what I just got from her.
She went on to correct me that with the Euro it was not going to be cheaper and trying to overcome my objection to no avail. At that time if she didn't realise she lost me, she just kept going deeper.
LEARNING: Your clients will come up with reasons they don't have Time or Money if you have not shown them that you can listen to their Wants and Needs and provide a happy buying experience. By all means let them talk - Use the 80/20 Rule in Listening vs Talking and learn to read their buying signals and how they like to be Sold to.
2. We then moved onto a wallet we saw as we walked in but got distracted by the bag. It was the wallet I ended up buying (Isn't it always the way you return to the first thing you really liked anyway) so we asked to be shown the wallet from the locked display cabinet. This is where the sales assistant did the right thing and suggested to show me the full collection of that model which had 5 different styles to choose from.
She brought them on a tray so I can have a bit of a play and see what would suit best. People Love Choice but not too much choice. Generally having 3 Options is best so Use this to you advantage and you never know your most exclusive choice may be the one they really want. The wallet I chose was the most expensive from the range (5 choices ranging from $1000-$1500)
3. Where she started mucking up again was when we were playing with the wallets and talking about the way I would use it in my life. The one I chose could fit my mobile phone as it had a zip and my phone is slim so I got excited at this prospect. The assistant then says 'They are not designed for carrying phones.' Who cares! I am excited about my phone fitting, I want to use it for that and I am not going to have the Chanel police chasing me if I put my phone in there. DON'T MAKE YOUR CUSTOMERS EVER FEEL THEY ARE WRONG! Agree with them to no end and then agree some more. Who cares what you think, they want to trust you are backing them all the way and that their experience is exactly how they have it painted in their mind.
So it went on. By the way we weren't offered any refreshment when we were buying (which never happens at Chanel) so there was INCONSISTENCY in the service I have had in the past and a few other belittling comments that just didn't feel right. I bought the wallet anyway as I walked in with a mindset to buy my Reward. I was in the less than the 3% of people that are looking to buy and they will buy no matter what. Had I been in the 97% - a transaction would not have occurred.
What would have worked amazingly for me is to draw me a picture of how i would be using the items, what that would feel like and to let me touch them more.
So there you go, lots of learning from this especially if you are in the world of high - value sales. At this level your selling game must be refined and spot on with your potential clients. They actually want to feel like you are their friend and care for them, they don't care as much for the product/service as I bet you they would have done background research before coming to see you anyway.
1. Stop Talking and let your Client talk and Listen so you can learn their buying strategy. 80/20
2. Never make your Client feel wrong - Agree with them to no end!
3. Offer choice - 3 is always best - do yourself a favour and you may make more bigger sales.
Ultimately BE CONSISTENT! If you are not a store as my business is not, treat your clients the same way through the whole relationship you have with them, pre purchase, post purchase and long term. They will send you so many referrals for this, you will need to scale your business to the next level.
LEARN TO LOVE SELLING - its a relationship game!
Love Nat x
P.S. Come along and be part of our Experience for 2 Full Days at the next Ultimate Brand Accelerator Masterclass in Melbourne. 19 and 20 July (9-5 both days) or 26 and 27 October. Click here to book your ticket for just $247 for these 2 massive experience days. If you are booking October please email us to tell us your ticket is for that one as the page only gives the choice of July.