Marks of Excellence
Use our checklist to make sure your customers always feel welcome and comfortable.
Shoppers will decide in the first few minutes if they are comfortable in a retail store environment. If they are comfortable they will stay longer, and the longer they stay, the more they will shop!
This is a checklist of things, some critical and some just important, that tennis specialty store retailers can do every day to make shoppers feel welcome and comfortable in their stores.
Inspect the outside entrance (or entrances) to your store every morning before opening to make sure everything is neat and clean.
Inspect your parking lot or parking area and make sure it is clean and all litter has been picked up.
If you have a lawn or grass and other plantings outside, make sure they are trimmed and watered and look good. Remove and replace plants that have died or are withered. Use mulch on flower and shrub beds to keep them looking sharp.
If you use potted plants inside your store, make sure they’re healthy. Get rid of dead and dying plants, and pick up any leaves that may have dropped.
Look at your main doors and windows and make sure they are clean. These are the “eyes” into your store.
Walk into your store like shoppers will and make sure the entrance is open, well-lighted and not crowded or intimidating…and as welcoming as you can make it!
Make sure the floors are clean and well maintained, and that they stay that way all day. Be prompt in picking up any litter or dirt, and instill this in your staff, too.
Walk your aisles like shoppers will and make sure they aren’t crowded and don’t give customers that “squeezed-in” feeling. Also, make sure a shopper pushing a baby stroller can pass through the aisles easily.
Look at your store displays to make sure they aren’t blocking shoppers’ line-of-sight and that your signs are visible and understandable as guides to shoppers and as silent sales tools.
Listen to the music played in your store and make sure it isn’t too loud, and that it is appropriate and pleasant and sets an upbeat and happy mood.
Inspect your store’s restroom and any other rooms to make sure they are neat, clean and well-lighted — and make sure there is a clear plan for keeping them that way all day, with specific staff assignments.
Inspect your dressing rooms with the same care and make sure the mirrors and the whole area is clean and well-lighted. Again, assign a staffer to check on these areas and keep them clean throughout the day. Make sure there is seating for shoppers’ companions, too.
Even if your store is space challenged, make sure there is seating located throughout your store for significant others so they don’t distract shoppers!
Convene a quick morning staff meeting before the doors are opened to make sure the day’s events and schedule are reviewed and discussed.
At the meeting, remind everyone:
- To always wear their nametags.
- That food and drink should stay in the break area.
- To keep personal cell phones and smart phones in their lockers for use during breaks, in the break area or outside the store.
- To have a good time and deliver extraordinary shopping experiences for customers!
- To greet every shopper as soon as they enter the store with a smile and the three-letter word – “HOW!” (as in, “How can I help you today?”)
This is part of a series of retail tips presented by the Tennis Industry Association and written by the Gluskin Townley Group (gluskintownleygroup.com).
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