Art of the Sale Redux

In April we talked story about the Art of the Sale, and I couldn’t help but think about it today as we spent our day in Scottsdale shopping. With the heat outside fluctuating between 108 and 111 degrees, parting with our dollars indoors became much more attractive.

As a result, I have two more things to add to our Art of the Sale discussions and tips:

  1. Being nice is a competitive advantage. Treat your customers with aloha and they are more inclined to buy from you.
  2. When you have a customer who is primed and ready to buy, for goodness sake, be helpful and SELL!

Put them together, and we’re back to Bottom-Line Aloha!

So here’s what happened today:

My daughter has been on a long-standing, exhaustive search for the perfect pair of sunglasses. We walked into a sunglass shop today and she walked directly to a display as if magnetized to it, tried on a $195 pair of Gucci shades and fell in love. She was ready to buy, but she asked the clerk to check for another pair because there was a long scratch on one lens.

Zilch. No back-stock. No discount offered for floor models, in fact “our store policy is we never sell damaged goods, no matter what.” Okay. My daughter was ready to drop $200, yet no effort was made to find her another comparable pair, or order another from Gucci.

Having decided to stay indoors and out of the heat, and with just short of a week’s sightseeing in Arizona thoroughly done, our search continued for those glasses: It became this Scottsdale scavenger hunt for us.

At the first store, we had written down the Gucci product number to help store clerks in each new place we looked, and we had quite a few options — if you haven’t been here, Scottsdale is quite the shopping mecca. If they sold Gucci, we’d give them the stock number: Another huge hint that we were ready to BUY. I was amazed how time after time so-called sales people would look it up, find out they didn’t have it, yet make no attempt whatsoever to suggest something else. In fact, we were getting the sense that we annoyed most of them, asking for something they didn’t have.

By the time we reached location number 5 and had the same thing happen (yes 5 times!) my daughter, who’d saved up for this trip and had more than that $200 in her pocket, decided that she no longer wanted to “spend my money with people who aren’t very nice.”

I’d been wondering how so many retailers packed into Scottsdale can make enough money to have their businesses be profitable. If they don’t learn the Art of the Sale, they won’t be.

Related Post:

‘Apelila Ho‘ohana: Bottom-Line Aloha, the Art of the Sale