7 Mistakes That Cause You To Lose Customers in Retail

When customers come to store they have a shopping experience. A store experience consists of roughly four essential components. These are:

  1. Main Theme of Brand Experience
  2. The Sensory Design of the Store
  3. Design of Business Processes in the Store
  4. Attitude and Behavior of Store Staff

Creating an excellent customer experience is possible not only with the store’s employees but also with the joint effort of the whole company. Deadly mistakes that companies make in customer experience management are more critical than employees’ mistakes.

Undoubtedly, it will be easy to put all the responsibility of the store staff’s attitude and behavior on the back of the employees. “Working with the right employees” and “employee experience” have severe effects on the formation of these attitudes and behaviors. “Employee experience” in the retail sector is a complicated and unfortunately somewhat problematic topic that can be the subject of a separate and long article.

Even if you have excellent in-store promotion if you wouldn’t properly behave customers, your store will be unsuccessful. If you want to learn the best in-store promotion ideas, check our latest blog.

Seven Attitude and Behavior Errors That Cause You To Lose Customers

1. Not Welcoming the Customer

Welcoming has decisive power over the consumer’s first impression of the store. It is accepted almost all over the world that every customer should be welcomed within 1 minute of his/her arrival to the store. No ceremony is required for this, just a welcome accompanied by a sincere smile. The subliminal message given to the customer is, “we are pleased with your presence here ..”.

At busy times, it is giving a “saw you .. welcome ..” sign, with a smile while making eye contact and using body language. In short, it means “I am aware of your existence ..”.

Courteously met clients will be more willing and comfortable to ask for help when they need something while experiencing the store.

be warm and friendly to your customers.
Be warm and friendly to your customers.

2. Indifference

The old sales saying is true, “People love to buy something, but they don’t like being sold something!”. We should accompany people’s purchasing experiences as their supporters. We should have an attitude and message that makes it easy for them to navigate and examine products loosely, but feel free to contact you whenever needed.

Another derivative of indifference is the negative messages given by the body language exhibited in the store. Not making eye contact, not giving him/her the confidence that you can easily consult me ​​when needed, hidden walls created with the disturbing in-store waiting position exhibited with arms tied to the chest level, gossip made by the employees of the store, “why do you ask questions” attitude especially during busy times, etc.

Another variant of indifference is not interested in the needs and expectations of the customer. Answering only the customer’s questions, not making observations to understand the customer’s problem makes customers disturbed. To focus on the product, try to direct the customer to the product to which the employee has to sell as necessitated by the performance system without understanding the customer’s need are other disturbing behaviors.

3. Mediocrity

In many stores, there are almost robotized employees. Maybe employees who focus entirely on the job rather than the people they face, are experiencing an ordinary situation fed on the unhappiness they experienced in the same cycle.

Some behaviors that mediocrity includes:

  • Similar product/service offerings
  • ready-made answers to the questions they hear a hundred times
  • a way of communication that we can’t call warm and friendly but even a little cold

You understand the power of friendliness in stores that make you feel it. When you encounter those rare employees who focus on your needs and try to help you friendly, rather than selling you something, you realize the difference. If you are not rude, ordinary behavior may not cause complaints, but it does not create admiration.

4. Rudeness

Happily, this attitude is not very common because the nature of the in-store relationship is generally positive. In the shopping journey, conflict processes are scarce. However, it can be challenging to maintain kindness at all times, especially in communication with unhappy customers in the parts of the after-sales department of the store. Regardless of the reason, rude behavior against any of the customers cannot be tolerated and accepted.

In environments where there is no friendliness and kindness, the tone of communication is, at best, an ordinary tone. Employees have a communication style that we call corporate politeness, but there is no sincerity and warmness. When this store is very crowded or when a customer makes a complaint, corporate politeness turns into rudeness. This situation makes our customers feel uncomfortable even though we are not aware of it.

Even on the phone, don't be rude to your customers.
Even on the phone, don’t be rude to your customers.

5. Stereotyping Customers

The prejudice “I know the customer to buy from a hundred meters” is often cited as to why some customers are not interested. Indeed, skillful salespeople can quickly catch their purchase signals. However, accomplished salespeople are also the ones who show the same attention to all customers whether they buy it.

The main reason for this prejudice is the habit of finding short paths that our brain has acquired over millions of years. Sure signs from our experience give us clues about our customers. It can easily be said that the accuracy ratio of these signs cannot be 100%. Many master sellers have stories about the sales they make to “never buy” customers. Mastery is gained not by selling to the potential customers you have said “this is certainly to buy..” but by selling to the customers that many salespeople say “it is not worth dealing with him/her..”.

Another negative aspect of this prejudice is “This customer does not buy.” It affects our behaviors and attitudes towards the type of customers. The negative comments about the customers, which you think “will not buy anyway ..” will also affect your customers. Every customer who comes to our store potentially affects our brand perception. Even the customer doesn’t buy; the excellent experience will make it your future potential customer, as well as suggest your brand to its entire environment.

It is not the right human behavior to “treat the customers according to their purchase potential.”

6. Not Using Customers’ Name

This attitude may seem a rather mild mistake for many of us. In an environment where hundreds of customers log in daily, such as merchandising, people say that this is not possible. In general, customers do not have such an expectation, and they do not even notice this shortcoming.

Although its deficiency does not cause any problems, its existence will make a difference. The name is an influential force for those who use it. The word that the human brain is most sensitive to is its name. Learning the name of your customers and using their names frequently while dealing with them will make the customer feel special. It will increase the communication and relationship between you to a more intimate level. You will have taken the first step in personalizing the service you offer.

It will transform the person from ordinary customers into another “human” for the service provider. It will support you to develop a friendly and warm attitude.

7. Not Farawelling Customers

The first and last impression is important, and the most frequently remembered are the last impressions. It is a rare behavior, especially for customers who have not made any purchases, to see them off the store warmly. Generally, the customers have never farewelled even a hot or cold farewell. There were also moments when you felt that you were politely fired with body language if you took the store employee’s time but did not buy anything.

Some people think sales pressure on store employees can justify this attitude and behavior. You can think performance systems and the managers are the reason for this behavior. Actually, I can say that this behavior would not be suitable for a skilled salesperson’s business for two reasons. First, as we mentioned above, every customer is a potential salesperson for his/her environment. Even the customer does not buy, if the shopping experience is pleasant, friends of customers will return to you as recommended sales in the future.

Secondly, it is not a forever loss for a customer not to buy on that day, especially in retail, where customers come back again and again in certain periods. If he is satisfied with the experience he has in your store, he will come back soon.

“Welcoming with a smile, showing that you are ready to help sincerely, making customers feel like someone special, selling them but also focusing on their troubles and whether they buy them or not taking care of them warmly” are not very sophisticated skills.

Surprisingly, such simple mistakes are so common and widespread. At the same time, companies have spent millions on marketing efforts and store decorations for brand perception. Although simple principles are not so widely followed, these principles provide essential clues to understand the customer experience.

It also offers us a significant opportunity. In an environment where many brands are still unable to satisfy even a warm welcome and farewell, getting rid of these errors will create a chance for us to differentiate in service.

If you avoid these mistakes in your store, customers will have a pleasant experience. You will see the increase in footfall and revenue. After you avoid these mistakes, if you want to see the change, you can check Udentify. Udentify helps you analyze your store and make every process optimized.

Did you check our retail analytics solution? You can start using Udentify that analyzes the customers’ behaviors at the brick and mortar shops. Udentify provides local conversion rate, head counting, heat maps, and order analysis. Thanks to the image processing technology, it can follow the customers anonymously, with which it gives meaning to the data that is gathered from the tracking by converting them to statistical models. It enables company managers to take data-oriented decisions by its management interface.


About author

Şerif Ali Enes Yolcu works as a Marketing Associate for Udentify the Camera-based real-time physical store productivity measurement platform that can help retailers find the right shelf share and store location for the products, avoid unnecessary staff and rental costs, make the right planning for new products and have the opportunity to quickly identify and solve in-store problems.
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