By Ron Simmons and DedeGossage
Another Christmas shopping and selling season has come and gone. Now it is time to think about next year. What!!?? But, between now and then, as a famous TV host’s tagline went, “Can we talk?”
Let’s talk about showrooming. This word has not yet found its way into the classic dictionary but has cleverly entered the retailing lexicon. Showrooming is what happens when you put 300,000,000 mobile devices with internet capability into the hands of 200,000,000 highly mobile consumers who are always looking for the best deal. Let’s talk about a customer that we’ll call, Sally Showroomer.
Sally comes into your store to see a product that she is interested in. She finds it and then whips out her smart phone to scan the tag on your merchandise or enters the name and model number in her phone. A downloaded app tells her two things: 1) who else in the area sells this item and for what price, and 2) who sells it online and for how much. You’ve just been “showroomed .” Does this scene look familiar? What can you do?
A couple of things are obvious: Sally is in YOUR store, RIGHT NOW! If you sit on your stool and look bored, the sale might walk right out the door. She might even order online from somewhere while she’s still in YOUR store – just to make sure she gets the right thing. Have you thought to tell her a couple of things? Sally can have delivery of that product INSTANTLY if she buys from you. Yes, instantly is quicker than later the same day, the next day, or in 3-5 business days and delivery is free! Since she’s right there, right now, she can have instant gratification and someone can tell her how to use it! Awesome delivery! Great service! Go get the order! What’s stopping her?
Wait, that sales tax thing is a problem. If she buys online from out of state, maybe she can avoid the sales tax, but maybe not. You have to know the competitors for what you sell. IF she doesn’t, don’t forget about that instant delivery and the outstanding customer service you offer!
Did you ever try to compare detailed specifications on a small screen? It’s not easy is it? Answer her questions. This is the Information Age. Are you the expert about your product? You’ve got to be. Get over to her and sell her first on YOU, the product benefits and maybe a few added value products. I guarantee you she can spend a little more than she really meant to. We teach this skill in our sales classes. Bigger tickets with multiple value-added products = more money in the drawer. The big box stores may do it best, but you can do it too! Do you want more customers or more sales per customer? Most people vote for more sales
You’ll have to work a little harder when Sally Showroomer comes around, but if you work a little harder, both of you will win. Now, go sell something!