Letter To The Editor: How To Get Sales Back After The Quarantine

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When this curfew is over, retail stores and restaurants will make or break their future when customers return to their stores. First impression count. These new customers are tired of being home and shopping online and waiting three to seven days to get something that they’re not sure is the right size or color or made out of a material they may or may not like. So, my suggestion to retail stores and restaurants: give the very best customer service and put the merchandise in the customer’s hand and explain the features and benefits of the item.

The customers may be wowed, and maybe, just maybe, they will come back and shop because, let’s face it, online shopping can be a crapshoot and returning items can be a real drag. So, bring back no-hassle returns. I think restaurants can wow the customer with polite service and an excitement to have a customer. Talk about your specials and know your menu in and out so you can suggest what the customers is looking for. You can suggest add-ons, like famous appetizers or drinks. These new customers will not be in a hurry, so ask them if they have seen your desserts. Trust me, they want to stay out of the house as long as they can, so sell them.

You can’t get all of these things from online shopping or carryout meals. So take advantage and staff your stores or restaurants, build excitement for customers, show them how much you appreciate them and they will show how much they appreciate you by increased sales.

It’s not magic or a secret. We all love to be catered to and/or customer-serviced. So wow us when this quarantine is over and your business will survive. A good owner or manager will lead by example and be on the floor selling or helping the experience go smoother or directing customers or sales staff so the store or restaurant is running like a well-oiled machine. Also, have a person at the front door asking how everything went and “did you find everything?” Not lip service. If they did not find something, tell them you will find it or get it. Lastly, but most importantly, thank and invite them back. Show that you care.

James Booker
Pasadena, Maryland
26 years of big-box retail management experience

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