NO Product Knowledge = NO $$

As a reader of our blogs, you’ve no doubt followed our consistent theme of ‘customers are more informed and demanding than ever before’.   That’s the single force that’s driving so much change in retail today.

With that in mind, ask yourself how you would rate your own Product Knowledge (PK) on a scale of 1 to 10.  10 means you’re an expert.  1 means you shouldn’t be on the floor. No doubt, you’re more an expert on some things than others in your store.  So, come up with what you believe is your ‘average’ PK score.

What did you rate yourself? 

Here’s what I can tell you flat out:  If you’re not at least a 7 (or have a plan to get there fast) you don’t stand much of a chance to provide worthwhile service or make a sale to a customer.   In all likelihood, your customers all too often know more about the products you’re selling than you do.

A few years back, you could get away with just knowing some surface details on the products you were selling.  Not anymore!

I was in a vitamin shop earlier today and working there was a delightful young woman who knew next to nothing about the products she was selling.  Seriously?  If ever there was an example of a ‘specialty’ shop a vitamin shop certainly fits the bill.  Needless to say, no sale was made there today.

Look, be selfish in your motives if you need to be to go and learn more about your products.  Consider how comfortable you are talking to customers about products you know well. Then, compare that to having to deal with a customer on a product you know little about.  Learn more about your products and your shift goes much better.

So, what’s your plan to move your score, and everyone else’s in the store, up to at least a 7 and preferably higher?   At minimum, commit to learning about one new product every day.  Learn about its features and benefits.  Learn which customers are most likely to buy it.  Learn what items you should add-on to it.  Learn how to sell it.

Know a little, sell a little.   Know a lot, sell a lot!

Kevin Graff is the main guy behind all things Graff Retail. A renowned retail expert, Kevin is recognized in the retail industry as a speaker, author and expert trainer. Kevin's main passion is to help retailers drive staff performance.

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