The spa front desk staff is a major part of the guest experience, especially if your retail products are in the same area. Unfortunately, spa managers rarely have an opportunity to sit in an unobtrusive corner and watch the interaction that takes place between the guest and the receptionist.
To help improve conversions, you need to give sales training for retail staff. Part of that is knowing what not to say.
Here are the five foolish questions never to ask your guests:
1. How are you today?
Admit it, you don’t care; the shopper knows you don’t care. This leads to the customer having to parrot back the expected answer, “Fine and you?” To which the retail employee responds with another expected answer, “Fine,” or they launch into another unthinking question or go silent.
What to say instead: Good morning, feel free to look around and I’ll be right back.
2. Are you looking to buy today?
Why it’s wrong: Trying to decide between lookers and buyers based on their answers is ludicrous. Many times people go into a shop not intending to buy but they get so romanced by the environment, displays, and salespeople that they treat themselves anyway. And just as many intend to buy, but a pushy salesperson’s comments and attitude have made them leave without their intended purchase.
There is nothing to say instead.
3. Isn’t this weather-related noun (heat, snow, rain) awful?
Why it’s wrong: If you get someone to agree, you’ve put yourself in misery’s company. You build rapport with someone by first finding out what positive things you have in common – not fishing for misery. And not about the weather.
What to say instead: Something positive about their skin if they just had a facial. What they are wearing or holding or the products.
4. Can I help you find something?
Why it’s wrong: Because it starts from the idea that customers all know specifically what they want, that they all are trying to fix something. But that’s not the case. Most spas carry luxury items – guests are filling a want not necessarily a need.
What to say instead: How can we make you feel better today? And then listen closely.
5. Do you have a budget?
Why it’s wrong: This question supposes that customers won’t spend more than they plan. It allows the salesperson to limit the customer’s choices and removes what probably would be the best solution. The best solutions cost more. You know this yourself…if you see something you really like, you’ll move heaven and earth to get it… and pay whatever it takes to get it.
What to say instead: We have a range of options and price points, to find your best solution, may I show you them all?
To read the Bob Phibbs article in its entirety go here.