There was a time when the sales mantra was:
The product will sell itself."
In todays economy with just about every company on Wall Street reporting lower sales and profits we must shift our own sales strategy back to the great depression mentality. This can be done without having to result in heavy pressure intimidation or bombarding consumers with unsolicited advertisements.
"I will find why I have the perfect piece for any person."
In the world of jewelry design we often hold our work in such high esteem that we feel it will often sell itself. We prefer to think of ourselves as artists and designers rather than saleswomen or salesmen.
A good salesperson is intuitive to their customer. They are perceptive to their customer's shopping habits , knowledgable about their in stock product, and attentive to their customers questions.
For example, if a young male is looking from necklaces to earrings and asking about color variations we might assume that he is shopping for his sweetheart and inquire about the clothing preferences whether she likes vivid colors, earth tones, or perhaps if she wears formal dress on occasion. If we have gems designs by birthstone we might ask the occasion for the gift, if the holidays aren't pending, and direct the conversation towards her birthstone month. If he asks for something that isn't readily available, don't be afraid to suggest custom pieces and alterations for an affordable price.
If the customer is aprehensive about making an immediate purchase do not be afraid to perform some polite persistance and dig deep into any reasons that may be disuading them. Ask what they don't like about it and insist that changes can be made to fit their needs. Politely inform them of the nature of custom made pieces that they are unique and may not be sold if they return later. Offering to hold items for a short period of time and presenting them with a business card as a last result will keep the item in their mind.
Inquire about any other occasions that may be coming up that they have forgotten. Maybe it is his sister's birthday in two months, a lover of nature, and you just happen to have a perfect leaf of breciated jasper or abalone shell that you could fashion into a pendant.
Do not limit yourself by what is directly in front of you and what you have prepared. A good jewelry designer has beads for all occasion and knows what she has and what she can make at any time. At the Silver Rose, we just did a large sapphire repair sale, because even though it was not in our inventory, we remembered that we had the perfect shade and cut that the customer needed uncataloged in my private stores.
Good customer service through careful questioning
breeds referrals and return business.
Next blog I'll discuss some unique untapped jewelry locations that have worked quite well for us over the years.