Remote selling today is about making a difference in the omnichannel universe. Every day you have the opportunity to connect and engage with people. Your actions can impact your lives for the better. You can help a customer to solve a specific challenge or a problem with humanization in the service, you can become the hero.
Now stop to reflect. How many salespeople in your offline business are idle and anxious for your initiative to involve them in the digital operation and increase revenue for the benefit of all. Become omnichannel. Be quick and empower them!
And if you have your own e-commerce or manage a remote sales team, you can be the leader of these heroes. As this leader, you will be called upon to create your team composition and motivate them, while staying up to date on how to connect and engage your customers. Don't let that pressure worry you. With a few simple tips and guidelines, you'll be well on your way to maximizing the potential of the remote sales world. I worked with some of the largest and most established retail companies and coached them on how to manage their teams and improve their operations. I am excited to share with you what I consider the most powerful concepts and strategies available to anyone in commerce. You are ready to start, come on.
Retail is constantly evolving. If we are to succeed, we need to provide immense value to our customers. I recognized that loyal customers are at the heart of big business. We need to cultivate and nurture these relationships with customers. In retail, it is becoming more challenging than ever to keep customers engaged and excited to do business with us. In order to do effective e-commerce management, there are some important tips that you need to keep in mind at all times.
First, check your customer base. Is your customer base changing? It's growing up? Or is it decreasing? This is where you can proactively strive to ensure that your business is growing the way you want it to. Why is it growing and changing? Is an online retailer offering a different or new experience? Are new competitors appearing? Those are the types of things that you need to be aware of.
Second, remember that customer service is everything. Customer service actions can include things you do to make a customer happy, or to surprise and delight a customer, or to deal with a specific situation that a customer may be facing. In today's world, many companies have found that by giving their employees more power and the ability to make decisions, they have dramatically improved customer service. It is important to give your staff discretion or at least some leeway to do what they think is necessary and within reason to please the customer.
Third, you cannot be comfortable when things are good. Many companies thought they could outlast the changes in the market, but for most of them, it didn't work as planned. I tell my clients that they need to be continually trying to improve. What more modern communication tools like chat, stream, live e-commerce have you already implemented? Are these resources being monitored to measure resource efficiency?
Look for ways to change your experience for your customers and employees, and always look for ways to reduce friction in the experience. I refer to friction as what makes the experience difficult, time-consuming or confusing. Think of your client going down the scrum on the computer screen. The goal is to make the experience as smooth and efficient as possible. Use these sales strategies and you will be well on your way to achieving great success. If you can keep this in mind at all times, you will perform above and beyond many of your competitors.
Customer experience and journey
Selling happens when you offer a consistent and remarkable customer experience. As a sales manager, it is up to you to ensure that the customer journey is perfect for all customers. If you look at any thriving sales business in any industry, be it selling shoes, jewelry or cars, it doesn't matter. Those who thrive and succeed are those who provide a remarkable customer experience. Here are four main strategies to consider when thinking about the customer experience from the point of view of retail sales management.
First, remember that the people who deal with the customer are the most important point of contact with your customers. Happier employees will lead to happier customers. You need to motivate your team and encourage and engage them positively if you want them to provide a great experience.
Second, remember the power of first impressions. In offline shopping we always smile, look in the eyes and engage the customer immediately. In e-commerce we need to convey this great way to start a positive experience for customers.
Third, become great listeners. We all want to sell and get more people to checkout, but one of the most important things you can do is to program your code to always be more cordial, friendly, attentive ..., to diagnose the situation before prescribing a solution. Remember that logic makes people think, but emotions make them act. People buy with their hearts. It is important for us to take advantage of this, and we do this by encouraging our people to be great listeners.
Finally, create a map of the customer journey. Take the time and map or list in order what happens from the moment a customer contacts your company until the moment he actually becomes a paying customer and what happens after that. How are they received when they enter? Or how are they served? What happens when they are checking out? What information are you trying to capture? What is the first email they receive after a purchase? These four strategies can go a long way in creating and driving a great customer experience. It doesn't have to be difficult, but one of the biggest problems is that many companies are too inconsistent. It's good sometimes, not so good on the other and bad on the other. That's why so many companies have such a diverse mix of online reviews. You better take specific steps to become consistently good, which is better than occasionally being great.
Measuring is vital
The greatest success in business comes from having an understanding of what needs to be measured in order for you to improve. In sales management, there are a number of different things that we can measure, and as you grow and develop your skills in managing business analysis tools. But to begin with, there are some fundamental things you need to pay attention to if you really want to be successful in sales. The first is your traffic. How much traffic are you getting? How many opportunities are you managing to sell? How many people are entering your store or company daily? This is the first thing you need to monitor to make sure that you are getting enough opportunities and that your marketing efforts are directing enough people to your business. Otherwise, you may need to ask questions like, do you need to increase your advertising budget? Or do you need to encourage existing customers to give a more positive word of mouth? Or do you need to market to existing customers more often to get them back to the store? Once you have this information, the next thing that you need to pay attention to is your conversion rate. How many people come into your store or company and actually buy something, compared to those who don't? Once you have an idea of your traffic, you can start calculating your conversions. In the online world, tracking conversions is simple, but in the omnichannel universe it is more complex. Measure how many people enter your store and buy or don't buy. You can then start looking for distinctions in your employees. For example, do customers buy more when Ana is working than Pedro? If you can measure and learn from it, you can start to see what Ana might be doing differently than Pedro. Finally, it is important to track the average order value. This is a great place to ask yourself if there are ways to increase the average order size. How can you make a customer buy more? Perhaps you can group products or services together, or you can do some testing with product placement. As with any company, tracking results is critical. Sales management requires a lot of measurement if you want to be successful. Start with these three simple but important metrics to continually improve your sales.
Many companies struggle in retail because they are not marketing effectively. They are not building their own customer list and they are not marketing to their customers regularly to engage them and build a relationship. Or they are not using all of the simple tools that are available to businesses today to segment a list of customers and deliver targeted, targeted messages to customers. Marketing is one of the most important things you can do to get people to your store for the first time or to get them back to shopping again and again. Here are the actions to be taken so that we can prepare for success.
First of all, it is important that you capture information in order to be able to market to your customers. So you can send them a weekly newsletter to thank them for their first purchase, or you can send something on their birthday. Most importantly, you can use this as a way to build a relationship with your customer.
Second, have your own customer list. The only and most valuable resource you have is your customer. Next to it are your customer's contact information. When you collect this, it allows you to do all sorts of interesting things with the information. For example, you reduce your advertising and marketing expenses because you will be able to specifically target those who have already opened their wallets for you. Nowadays, any company can have a list of customers. And every company must work diligently and constantly to build a bigger list.
Third, segment customer information. By understanding your customer and who they are, and different things about them, you can target and market more effectively. This is the best way to generate results from your email marketing list and your internal marketing efforts. For example, if you sell to adults and teenagers, it is important to be able to distinguish them. Because you can sell and market different products and services for each of them. It is important to identify what is important to specific customers. A great marketer once said that the key to a successful marketing campaign is to enter the conversation that is already going on in the customer's mind.
By learning about your customers, their buying habits and their interests, you are better able to target messages directly to them in a more specific way. This is a victory for you because it allows you to take a product and know exactly who the buyers are. This should be one of the most important areas of focus in your retail sales efforts. By applying these marketing strategies, you will meet your customers' needs and they will feel that you are talking to them personally.
Sales talent is about enjoying positive relationships with people
Many successful businesses thrive because they spend a lot of time and energy making sure they have the right people in the right places for the right things. Trade is no different. You want to stack the odds in your favor. To do this, you need to hire people who fit your type of business. Who will perform well and treat their customers with respect. Here are some tips to make sure you hire in advance, avoiding costly mistakes that need to be fixed.
First, when conducting an interview, try to show them live interactions between employees and customers, let them see your business in real time and get an idea of your pace. They may be nervous, but see how they stay intact with their co-workers or with the products on the shelves or with the shop's customers. Do they smile and make eye contact? Or do they look a little strange?
Second, forget all the basic interview questions and talk to the potential employee. Talk to them about specific situations that arise in the store or customer issues that they are likely to have to deal with. Ask them to consider how they will respond or what they would do in a given situation.
Third, stage specific situations during the interview process. Tell them you are going to play the customer and they are going to play the store clerk. Use behavior-based situations, describe a scenario, and ask them to deal with the situation. Well, this may be the first job in retail, or they may not be sure how to handle the situation, but it is important to look for the characteristics and qualities that you want. For example, do they listen when you describe a particular problem? Are they able to respond in a calm and controlled manner? Do they make eye contact? Look for people you think fit your business perfectly. Employee turnover is one of the most expensive things in all businesses, but it can be especially high in retail. Not everyone was made for the stressful demands of a retail job. Employees are dealing with customers every day, some good, some bad and some just horrible. You need the right kind of person to be able to deal with these situations, or to always have a smile on your face and to make sure that you are always doing your best to represent your company. Don't be in a hurry when hiring. Don't rush the process and make sure you get the right people from the start. This will set the stage for great success and avoid costly and time-consuming problems later.
The importance of benchmarking
Here is an instant questionnaire for sales managers. What are the five most common complaints that your team had to deal with last month? Are these the same five complaints that they dealt with in the last quarter? Or how about last year? Or how about that, out of the last 100 complaints your company has had, how many have been dealt with satisfactorily for you and the customer? If you are like many business owners, this is the kind of question that is really difficult to answer. They are critical because they are the types of questions that allow you to prioritize where the opportunities for improvement are. One of the best strategies you can do as a sales manager is to understand the power of internal benchmarking. Internal benchmarking is simply the process of observing the things that are happening in your business and creating your own test to find areas of success that you can capitalize on or pain points that you need to correct. For example, in a retail business, you can track conversions based on employees. You may find that it appears to generate more sales when a specific employee is working compared to another. The question we now need to ask is why. Once you've identified a particular situation, or an area where there seems to be some deviation from the norm, this is a great place to start trying to figure out what you can do to improve everyone's skills. You may find that sales are better simply by the way an employee greets customers. This is something that we can quickly train our other employees to do, but without tracking this type of information, we are just guessing. Here are some simple ways to start internal benchmarking.
Number one, start small. Choose an area of your company that you can measure and try to find an opportunity. Some examples may include the number of customer service incidents per store or the number of reimbursement requests per employee. If you have multiple stores, you can check the number of incidents from one store to the next.
Number two, measure your results over a period of time. For example, you can choose to measure something over a period of 30 days to see what you can learn. You can even ask your staff to help with the measurement. For example, if you are measuring the number of customer service incidents at multiple stores, require your managers to send you a daily record of all incidents at each store.
Number three, analyze the results and find the good points or the problem points. The bright spots show where you can improve and increase sales. And the pain points show areas where you may need additional training, or new employees, or to move some employees to different areas of the company. Internal benchmarking is one of the most positive things you can do to increase retail sales. It's about taking a good, critical look at your business and seeing what you can do to improve. The most valuable part of internal benchmarking is that you are using real, live and concrete data to make your decisions, and the data based on reality does not lie.
The power of training
Very often, I work with companies that treat training as an annual expense. They get everyone together for a conference, bring a speaker, sometimes someone like me, and then send everyone away thinking they will do a great job. I tend to refuse these orders because I think companies don't get lasting value from them. People leave motivated and enthusiastic and, of course, think I was a fantastic speaker. But they usually go back to work and go back to their normal habits.
If you want to create change, you need consistent and continuous training. To develop this type of continuous training, use staging. In retail, role representation is one of the most underused growth tools available. Here are some ways to implement role playing and how to do it correctly. First of all, let everyone know that you will be performing regularly. Some of these performances will take place on the spot in live and dynamic situations, and others will take place behind closed doors. Here is an example. As a manager, if you witness a particular situation with a customer and feel that there is an opportunity to improve, this is the perfect time to represent. As soon as the customer leaves, ask your employee to represent the situation with you. Have your employee represent the customer and you will play the role of the employee. Use this as an opportunity to show them a different way or maybe even a better way to respond. When you pull them aside to act, don't say that they did a bad job. Say something like that. That was great, but let's try it in a different way. I want to show you something that I could have said.
Second, don't just use role plays to create catchy moments. It can be very tempting, during learning and development, to try to hinder or confuse the other person or simply be overly difficult. One of the best and most valuable things you can do is to be natural. Again, use real situations that your people have already dealt with. Even if the real life situation involves a nightmare customer, be realistic and work with your employee to try to find a suitable solution.
Third, keep a record of your role-playing sessions with specific employees. It is important to keep a record of what skills and situations you have worked on. Use this as a way to show them where they have improved or how far they have come, and use it for yourself to see where you have to keep repeating the same thing over and over. This can be a sign or a sign that they need additional training or additional help in addition to the staging.
As a sales manager, one of the most valuable things you can do is to stage and stage regularly. People do not always like to interpret because it may seem strange or you may feel put on the spot. Or people tend not to take it seriously because it seems like a joke. But what I've found working with companies of all sizes is that when they can implement role playing, it creates much more valuable interactions in the real world. So use it, use it regularly and make it part of your management toolbox.
Learning and development transform people
I remember a time when a mentor of mine told me that if I was not prepared to respond to an objection, then I deserved to lose the business. He explained to me that there were only a finite number of things that a client could tell me and that I should always be prepared to deal with these situations. Of course, there may be strange requests here and there, but I must always be prepared and ready to respond to the most common objections from customers. Trade is no different. All your employees must know how to respond effectively and accurately to any customer situation, whether it be a positive or negative interaction.
They must understand and know how the company expects them to respond. Now again, there will be difficult and challenging scenarios. This is where your help as a manager will be extremely valuable. One of the things I advocate for many of my clients is the development of a onboarding guide corporate shared. An onboarding guide is a document or book that describes the most common situations that your employees are likely to face and ensures that they are able to respond effectively. See how you develop your own onboarding guide.
First, the onboarding guide must capture your most likely or most common scenarios. As well as a global view of the company's processes, to open the vision of the business as a whole. For example, in retail, your script book may include responses within these three categories. Deal with customers who are upset about the service level. Or dealing with customers upset about product quality. Or deal with customers who question your company about policies, including refunds and exchanges and guarantees. A properly configured roadmap would include several different scenarios in each of these categories and how the company expects them to be handled. Now that you have developed a scriptbook, make sure it becomes part of your ongoing training.
If it is for new employees, make sure they are up to date on situations and challenges and test them regularly. Test them out by doing some simple dramatizations found in your script book. Finally, meet regularly to review your script book. Confirm any new scenarios that have arisen since the last time you met, or that they did not know how to deal with, or that were outside the scope of the current script book. See if everyone agrees if this is something that should become part of the onboarding guide shared. It must be treated as a living organism that breathes and updates itself constantly.
You know that I often hear from sales managers and customers in a variety of businesses, that they tell me that they are always having to get involved or deal with situations that their employees don't know how to deal with. That's why a script book is so important, and why I advocate it for sales and services, and in almost every sector of the company where people are dealing with customers. It equips your people with the tools and power to handle the most pressing customer challenges and allows you to better manage your team.
If you want happy customers, you need happy employees. Much of the success of retail sales comes from having the right people serving your customers. Consider Disney's approach to hiring. They can train the right skills they need in their parks, but they cannot train a bad attitude. You need to make sure you have the right people with positive attitudes, but once you put them in place, how do you turn their potential into a Superstar? Give your people the freedom and flexibility to make decisions. Your people probably have their own specific way of doing things. Consider giving your employees more freedom and flexibility to do the right thing, to delight the customer and make them happy. Encourage them to go the extra mile to make the customer feel special. Show them that you trust your judgment and that you have faith that they are willing to make the right decisions. Encourage your Superstars. Think about how you can give your regular employees an extra boost to become your stars. It doesn't have to be an award trip to the Bahamas, you can offer something small, like a gift card to a local cafe or some movie tickets. Even if you can't offer cash benefits or rewards, consider other incentives, like going out early on a Friday night or extra shifts, if that's what they want. Praise the right behaviors. You can do this privately or publicly, but it is important to recognize your team and your efforts. When you see an employee doing something that creates a positive impact with the customer, it is important to recognize them. People want to feel appreciated and recognized for their hard work.
Great success comes from having great people. To have great people, you need to nurture them, take care of them and show them that you are willing to invest in them. If you do, they will be willing to give back. To be successful in retail, you need to think about how you are feeding or cultivating your team of stars. Invest in your people with time, energy and money, and they will usually give you back where it matters most, delivering an exceptional experience to your customers and being reliable and trustworthy. Consider whether you are doing enough to empower, encourage and motivate your team. By applying some of these techniques, you will go a long way in creating a Superstar retail sales team.
Team passionate about what they do
Many companies start each day with a morning meeting. The manager gathers everyone, speaks a few words about what the goals of the day are or what can be improved. She can share some positive praise about a specific employee, and then they all join hands and applaud, ready for another fantastic day. You can certainly start your day and your team with a morning meeting, and it's a great way to motivate your team, but it's not the only way. Here are some simple ways to motivate your team to serve the customer and do the best job by introducing your company to the world.
First, recognize that everyone on your team is different and everyone is motivated by different things. It is important that you take the time to get to know your employees individually and what is important to them. What really motivates them to do a great job? What are your strengths and weaknesses? For example, some people may be better suited to work in different areas. If you know someone who doesn't like the task of managing inventory, but loves to receive customers, or help with product registration, or manage social networks, try to put people where they are likely to do their best work.
Then, recognize when people do a good job. It is important to let your people know that you are not only watching the times when they make a mistake or when you think they could have done better, but you also recognize the times when they went beyond or even just had a positive interaction with a client. This helps a lot to motivate your people to do a great job. It shows them that you care and that you are aware of what they are doing. Take time to recognize your people and create an environment that focuses on positive recognition. Do not abdicate responsibility, but give your staff the ability to make decisions.
Make sure that all your employees understand the correct procedures and processes for dealing with difficult customers or odd requests, but empower them to make decisions. People are not always motivated by money. In fact, people are more intrinsically motivated when they have the opportunity to make decisions, or to lead, or to use their own judgment. Finally, show people the path to success. For some of your employees, this may just be a job. For others, it may be a career choice, but it is important for people to recognize that there is a path through which they can progress or get promotions. Show them how to do this and encourage them by offering additional support and training. Motivating a rockstar sales team does not have to be difficult. You just need to be sure to follow these simple steps and be a great leader. Recognize that people inherently want to do a good job, but too often, people focus on the negative when, if we focus on the positive and understand that people generally have our best interests in mind, that's when they will really shine.
Sales are for the strong
Sales are not for the faint of heart. It is challenging, fast and each day is a new adventure. You will be faced with new scenarios and challenging situations. You will deal with customers and your employees, and it is up to you to bring it all together. As I said, this is not for everyone, but it doesn't have to be difficult. If you can apply just a few of the things we teach in this course, you will be well on your way to becoming an amazing sales manager. Remember this, you and your employees have a chance to make a difference every day and the choices you make and the things you do will directly contribute if a customer decides to do business with you again, or never again. I know that if you implement some of the things in this course, you will be well on your way to providing an experience that people keep talking about. Your employees will be engaged and work to provide a consistent experience every time.