We are half-way through the holiday frenzy and the reports from retail jewellers are looking pretty good, or at least better than the last few years have been. There are still two weeks to go and these should be the busiest for jewellery stores. It is time to take a quick break for a staff meeting to review a few very important points.
This is the peak time for jewellery theft. Sales people are busy and distracted. Crowds can make it easy for a thief to blend in and escape. Now is the time to review your security procedures. The theft of one high dollar item can ruin an otherwise good season.
When we are rushed we often cheat on the basic parts of a sale to hurry on to the next customer. Never forget the add-ons. This is your best chance to get a high add-on success rate because your customer is in power-shopping mode. Don’t stop selling until they run out of people on their gift list.
For the next two weeks you will see more customers per day than any other time of the year. You need to capture them in your database for future marketing efforts. Do whatever you can to collect email addresses. Get them on sales receipts, have everyone fill out a contact slip and have a drawing for a prize. Get as much data as your customer is willing to share but be careful not to push too hard. A strong mailing list, both digital and snail-mail, is a gold mine.
Suggest ways for your customers to share their experience on social media. Ask a happy customer to do a “selfie” with you and upload straight from their phone. Set up a “selfie” backdrop of your logo and contact info with good lighting and encourage every customer to use it. Upload a shot of your store when it is crowded. Post a picture of your latest custom piece. If you do this a few times a day and with every customer that comes in, you will get a social buzz going to bring in even more new customers. Make it happen.
This is the holiday time so don’t be afraid to party. Have cookies, punch and treats for your customers. A little wine or champagne can help loosen a wallet. Play upbeat music. Wynton Marsalis puts out an annual holiday album with traditional songs jazzed up enough to be barely recognizable gems of subliminal marketing. If your customer is dancing, they’ll be buying.
Don’t forget the staff
You are probably pushing your team hard at this time of the year. Keep them motivated. A few kind, encouraging words can go a long way in boosting morale. Be sure they get a couple of breaks during the day. Have a variety of snacks and soft drinks in the back room. A quick slice of pizza is always welcome. If your staff feels appreciated, they will give you their best efforts.