Avid readers of my blog know that I am particularly fond of my sister’s venture www.bakecake.eu. It grew out of a hobby on a shoestring budget.
I have been in Planet Tuš Kranj mall today where my sis has a sales booth with bakecaking equipment and kitchenware that she primarily sells at Bakecake. I decided to take half a day to try selling to bypassers. First line contact with customers was what I came for.
Albeit the fact that Monday mornings aren’t really frequented at the mall, my sis was very pleased, so much so that she even said how great sales were today.
The four hours I spent at the booth were immense fun. We greeted almost everyone passing the booth, we invited all to taste sister’s freshly baked cookies, we chatted, we listened, I took the cookies and gave them to some employees nearby, and we still had time for a nice cappuccino, discussion about the kids, a lot about the business, something about the coming family holidays and many other things. Joyful, lively, relaxed.
I observed the following:
– people find it much easier to approach your booth if your booth already has a customer in front of it.
– customers either want to talk, or they want to have quiet time observing your offer, you have to feel when’s the right moment to talk.
– cookies at the booth are a great ice-breaker, even a lure.
– have extras ready (my sis had cookie recipees), once you sell something, your customers need reassurance, if they feel you’re treating them fairly, they will keep on adding to the basket. Best buys are made of several items, and then your customers even say they will come again or bring their friends with them
– most visitors in malls come twice, when entering and when exiting. Being courteous the first time can lead to a sale when they come the second time.
– the typical buyer is mid-aged to even older housewife, however they often come with their family. Treat everyone as if they were your target customer, although you know most products will be sold to the housewives.
– being nice and open with your companions from the nearby booths and shops helps, even if they just come to chat. It is always nice to talk to people, and they increase the crowd in front of your booth.
There are myriads of improvements to be made in Bakecake’s sales approach however there is something more important than coulda-woulda-shoulda thinking. It is called timing. Everything will come, just keep up the good spirit, dear sis. You’re doing great, keep improving and enjoy the improvements. They are your steps, they are your lessons, they are your happiness.