Holidays and Repeat Customers

posted: Friday, December 9, 2011

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One of the biggest keys to selling, as we all know, is establishing a repeat customer base. This is nothing new, of course and we’ve talked about it many times throughout the years. A salesperson can be successful selling once to new customers all the time but it is a difficult way to make a living. The best salespeople are constantly working to increase their repeat customer base and the holidays represent a perfect time for every salesperson to do that.

For the most part, salespeople in all fields are going to see some sort of increase in the number of customers that they interact with on a daily basis. Obviously your first goal is to satisfy the customer at that given point in time, but professional salespeople also see that as an opportunity. For example, if a customer comes in to buy a necklace for his wife on Christmas, that’s an opportunity to establish a repeat customer. The first thing, of course, is to satisfy the customer with the necklace that he is looking for. If the customer leaves your store satisfied, then they are likely to return. However don’t be afraid to be proactive in trying to establish a future customer base.

That customer who came in to buy the necklace may have only come in because it was the holidays and he was shopping around, and you did a great job in meeting his needs. Now it is time to take the next step and get that customer to come back in the future. You could say something like, "I am happy we were able to find a necklace that I am sure your wife will love. Just so you know we have a great selection of unique Valentine’s Day gifts that you may want to check out when the time comes." At that point, hand the customer your business card and thank them again for their business.

The next step is to write a quick thank you note, both for their business and to wish them a happy holiday season. It sounds like a lot of work, but in reality it’s only going to take you a few minutes to write a quick thank you. A customer is going to interact with hundreds of salespeople between now and the end of the holiday season. But they are going to remember the customer service you provided, and the thank you note that they received. A little extra effort now will lead to more sales in the future.

FINAO - Brad Huisken

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