When I consult with spa managers in the United States they often tell me that their number one problem is getting their staff to sell retail products. The past three years spent working in Asia has shown me that the same challenges exist.
Their solution has frequently been to increase product training, and to remind their staff more often how important selling is. This rarely fixes the problem because they are not addressing the root cause.
The spa industry has failed to recognize that most of its therapists are introverts by nature. They are quiet people who prefer the peaceful environment which so many spas offer. They work in subdued lighting. Customer interactions are mostly one on one. Because communication occurs largely through touch, the need to speak is kept to a minimum. This suits them just fine as introverts are not huge fans of small talk.
However, most therapists have nurturing spirits. They will bend over backwards to relieve someone’s pain. And as introverts they tend to be great listeners.
The good news is that listening well is at the heart of engagement. And engagement is the key to selling retail products.
For many therapists, customer engagement is initially very difficult. But once the stress and trepidation they experience from second guessing themselves is removed, they become the retail superstars that they are meant to be. And it happens rapidly.
Here are some tips that may help you position your team for more success in increasing your retail sales.
Tip #1 - Ask your therapists what gets in the way of their selling. Address their concerns and fears with empathy and honesty.
Tips #2 - Divide your team into groups of three. Have them give a one minute presentation to their peers on something they love.
Tip #3 - Have the listeners repeat back what they heard the presenter say. This will help to build listening skills.
Tip #4 - In private provide positive feedback to the presenters on their presentation strengths. Guide them on improving their weaknesses.
Tip #5 - Using their strengths, repeat the presentation process using a retail product that they like. Roleplay presenting to a customer during down-time.
About the Author
Linda Harding-Bond is shifting the paradigm on spa retail training with "Increasing Your Retail Selling an On-line Training Class for Spa Managers. This system focuses on customer engagement and discerning the guest's needs through skilled listening. It is uniquely designed to stimulate product sales using the inherent skills of introverts-the predominant personality type in the spa and wellness industry. Results are immediate and long lasting. The program is guaranteed or your investment is cheerfully returned! Linda has provided training for Empire Beauty Schools, MSpa International, Six Senses Resorts, Oberoi Group and Goldeneye Resort & Spa. She is author of The New Esthy Handbook. Contact her by e-mail for a complimentary consultation- Linda@Moontideconsulting.com .