6 ways to engage a customer

The holiday madness is over and it is back to the daily grind of running a retail store. Selling jewellery on a day to day basis can become a routine task. It is easy to slip into a selling rut; using the same approach, spouting the same tired sales pitch, and showing the same products to each customer.  Here are 6 tips to break out of the rut, sharpen your selling skills and engage your customer.


1. The non-approach

Even if you are a master at asking leading questions, when greeting a new customer you will often hear the dreaded “I’m just looking.”  Let’s acknowledge it right at the beginning and get over with it: “Hi, welcome to XYZ jewellers.  We have a vast array of jewellery designs.  Feel free to take a look around.   I’ll check back with you in a bit.”   The most important part is telling them you’ll check on them.  When you approach them again, you are fulfilling a promise in a non-threatening way.  Now you can engage them without being pushy.

2. Show the best first

Never underestimate the buying power of any individual.  No matter what they ask to see, always show them the very best that matches the category. If they say they can’t afford it, have them try it on anyway.   Where they first had the experience of her wearing a 6 ct diamond or having a $100,000 tourbillon watch on his wrist is a place they will always remember.  They will be back when they can afford it.   Sometimes they will surprise you and buy it now, you never know

3. Ask for an opinion

One of the best ways to engage a customer is to ask for an opinion.  While she is browsing, pull a few items from a showcase.  Call her over and explain that you will be changing the display and would like her advice.  Does she think the items go together well enough to be featured in the display?  Or show her a coloured stone and ask if it would look better is silver of gold?  When a customer is helping you, they become part of the experience and are more likely to buy from your store.

4. The impossible task

Find the 3 items in your inventory that you are least comfortable about showing.  Learn everything you can about them; to the point of being an expert.  For 3 consecutive days, show each of the 3 items to at least 3 customers.  If you are diligent in this challenge, it is impossible to finish it. At least 2 of the items will be sold before you can complete the task.

5. Pocket rocks

Keep a loose diamond or coloured stone in your pocket.  Show it to everyone who walks into your store.  Use a variety of lead-ins:  “We just got this, you’re one of the first to see it” or “Check this out, what do you think I should do with it?”  Or “Have you ever held a 5 ct unheated Burmese Ruby?”   Get a discussion going and get the stone in their hands.  You’ll probably need another stone before too long,

6. Have fun

The above techniques are all designed to engage the customer, get them into a conversation and make them part of the experience of being in your store.  They work best if you have fun with it.  If you can get your customer laughing over a shared experience, you’ll have a customer for life.

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