I recently made a visit to a local electronics store. Even on a late Tuesday afternoon, the store was busy. Elbow room was scarce, and sales persons were even scarcer. I signed in and found a relatively out-of-the-way spot to wait. After what seemed like ages, it was finally my turn: I was approached and greeted by a sales person holding a mobile device. Awesome, I thought. I don’t have to push my way up to a register to check out; I can do it here with her. The sales person asked what brought me into the store that day. I told her what I was looking for, and almost before I was finished speaking she held up her mobile device and began tapping. Tap tap. Tap.

Gone was the eye contact. I found myself growing ever so slightly annoyed.

She briefly looked up and repeated what she thought I asked for. No, I shook my head. I again told her what I was looking for. Half-way through my sentence she nodded and resumed tapping. My annoyance grew. I looked around the store and wanted to run for the door. Maybe it would be easier to order online…but the door seemed incredibly far away, and there was a sea of customers between me and escape. I stood where I was and waited.

Finally she looked up and said, “I’m not sure if we have that. I’ll go check in the back.” She disappeared into the crowd.

I wondered if she would even be able to find me when she returned – she had hardly looked at me long enough to know what I looked like.

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Perhaps you have had an experience similar to this. Mobile retail systems are wonderfully convenient when used correctly, but when misused…they can turn a normal shopping experience into a nightmare.

When deciding whether or not to purchase a mobile retail system, a concern many retailers may have is how the mobile system will affect – and how it will change – the way their sales team interacts with their customers. This is a big concern, and it can be addressed with a simple answer: communication.

When using a mobile retail sales system, it is important for the sales team to be trained in the use of the system – not just which buttons to press when, but how to balance using the system while making a good impression on the customer and closing the sale.

There are a few key communication points to keep in mind when training a sales team on using a mobile point of sale:

Don’t be that guy.

Eye Contact

The next time you’re in a crowded store waiting in line, look around you – what are most people doing? Tap tap tapping. This is fine for killing time, but when a customer is standing in front of you needing attention, tap tap tapping is the last thing you want to be doing. Eye contact is one of the most important ways to personalize a customer’s sales experience. Customers want to know they are being listened to and understood. Sales persons should put eye contact first and foremost – before even lifting the mobile device. Make eye contact, listen to the customer’s needs, reply, “I can help you with that”, and then and only then, lift the mobile device to check inventory or start a new order.

Smile

This one is easy, right? Along with eye contact, it’s important to remember to smile when working with customers (and even when not). A smile is powerful – it can make all the difference in closing a sale. Be consistent with smiling and eye contact, and your customer’s shopping experience will be an iconic one.

Body Language / Tone

It is important to focus on customers – not the mobile device in your hand. Eye contact and smiling help with that, but if your body language says you are anything other than happy to be there working with them, the sale will be more difficult to close. Make sure you are turned to face the customer, and maintain an open posture. Keep your tone friendly, and energetic.

Training and Support

There are other communication tips to help get your sales staff versed in using a mobile retail system. Integrating a mobile system into your retail process and training your team are things we here at Iconic are excited to assist you with. Drop us a note for more information or to schedule a training session.

Photo credit: Tobyotter / Foter / CC BY